This was the week. Last weekend was due to see the commencement of the 2020 All-Ireland Championships. Games in London and New York would have got us going. This weekend though is where it really hits.
Today and tomorrow, the championship was due to kick off with a bang. 11 games were due to take place across the All-Ireland senior football and hurling championships, and that's before you even get to the kick off of the Joe McDonagh, Christy Ring and Nicky Rackard Cups.
The hurling round robins were slated to begin with All-Ireland Champions Tipperary in action against Waterford, Kilkenny taking on Dublin, Laois making their revamped Leinster Championship debut against Galway, and the always classic pairing of Cork and Limerick clashing in Munster.
In football, there was to be first round action in all four provinces with Monghan and Cavan the highlight in Ulster. Mayo were also due to be in action against Leitrim.
Most of all though, this weekend was due to mark the return of The Sunday Game. Luckily, RTE haven't messed with the schedule too much and Des Cahill be still be with us on Sunday nights, even if Joanne can't bring us any live games earlier in the day. The programme will return tomorrow night at its usual time with Des being joined in studio by GAA president John Horan and two panels will join Des to look back one some classic games of the past.
Cyril Farrell and Anthony Daly will be on hand to relive the classic Galway and Clare semi-final from two years ago while Ciaran Whelan and Stephen Rochford will look back on a game that Rochford was centrally involved in, the 2017 All-Ireland final.
The promo RTE have released for the return of the show has left us feeling a bit emotional this morning. On one hand, the classic clips of the incredible moments we've witnessed over the years have made us excited to see more classic games in weeks to come. In truth though, the melodic cover of Don Henley's Boys of Summer and the fact this should be all setting up a new collection of memories in 2020 has left us very aware of what we're missing.
The Sunday Game returns this weekend with classic action and reaction, accounts from players on the front-line and the latest news from the world of Gaelic Games. GAA President John Horan joins @sportsdes in studio tomorrow night on @rte2 at 9:30pm pic.twitter.com/aX4ymEXKlG
— RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) May 9, 2020
There should be real, new, important GAA this weekend. There isn't and there can't be. We have to make do with what we have, and having Des Cahill with us on Sunday night will help. But we can still mourn what we've lost. Summer was meant to start today. We likely won't have our summer at all this year.