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The Sunday Game Reached Peak 'Triangles' During Their Cavan v Monaghan Analysis

The Sunday Game Reached Peak 'Triangles' During Their Cavan v Monaghan Analysis
By Mark Farrelly
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Technology in tv sports analysis has come a long way but I think, when it comes to GAA punditry, we finally reached peak geometry last night when The Sunday Game panel gave their take on the Cavan v Monaghan Ulster quarter final during their highlights show.

The lads set their stall out early, with their use of triangles to point out the double sweeper tactic Cavan played in attempting to curtail the influence of Conor McManus:

One triangle

Two triangles


However, it wasn't until Shane Curran began to dissect how Monaghan pulled victory from the jaws of defeat, that we properly saw 'all the angles of the pitch' come to the fore.

Malachy O'Rourke was obviously impressed with Cavan's triangle set-up in the first half, leading to the Farney army come up with a few triangles of their own.

Three triangles



Four triangles

Why was Monaghan's triangle tactic so successful though? Well because Cavan's defensive set-up was the wrong shape. Their biggest problem was that around the middle third, they were set up as...

A mouthafuckin trapezoid!



Monaghan's subs, Dick Clerkin, Colin Walshe and Stephen Gogglebox, used all their experience in breaking down trapezoids, through the use of ... you guessed it...




Diagonal passes

Another interesting point, in terms of angles, is that what Cavan thought was a diagonal ball, actually wasn't a diagonal ball. For example, this was not a diagonal pass...

Rec163r34 by dm_5243421981344

But actually, this ball, was the perfect 'diagonal' pass.


Rec160re by dm_5243421981344

And this one.

Rec161yg by dm_5243421981344


Vertical passes

Monaghan also were fine exponents of the 'vertical' pass. As shown in the example below.

You could, if you were cynical, argue that they were just drawing shapes around random men on the field, and that a pass kicked straight ahead isn't a diagonal ball. You could also make the point that a vertical pass would be one that just goes straight up in the air but sure who am I to argue?


So there you have it. Gaelic football - it's a game of triangles.


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