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VIDEO: So, Who Was Responsible For Mayo Warming Up At Hill 16 In 2006

VIDEO: So, Who Was Responsible For Mayo Warming Up At Hill 16 In 2006

Of all Mayo's many, many All-Ireland semi-final victories in the past quarter of a century, the 2006 comeback is the perhaps the most celebrated and vividly remembered.

Mayo impetuously chose to warm up in front of Hill 16, apparently forgetting the rule that was passed at Congress stating that Dublin must warm up in front of the Hill in every match.

As Mayo lobbed balls into the terrace goal, the furious Dublin crowd jeered and whistled. The Mayo players displayed admirable nonchalance, as if they were oblivious to the nature of their 'gesture'.

The consensus in the RTE studio was that it was gimmicky and an 'empty gesture'. Colm O'Rourke characterised it as 'foolish' and Joe Brolly compared it to Willie Anderson eyeballing Buck Shelford before the haka in 1989. Mickey Moran appeared a bit edgy about the gesture. The boys speculated that he was about to urge retreat, a course of action Michael Lyster advocated. Clearly, not infused with the spirit of Martin Johnson.

The Dubs were thoroughly affronted by the sight of Mayo kicking balls into their goal.

In a rather cringeworthy display, the Dublin players solemnly marched arm in arm towards Hill 16. Paul Caffrey went charging into the back of Mayo selector John Morrison.

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Most Mayo players have portrayed the move as 'a spur of the moment' thing. They just randomly decided to warm up down there and thought nothing of it. Kevin O'Neill told the Mayo News that it wasn't 'calculated'

So, who's idea was it? Well, it's no proof, but Conor Mortimer has mentioned one name. And it is a predictable one. He told Niall Kelly that the management team were advocating going down to the Canal end and prepare as normal. Mayo's braveheart's considered response was 'fuck that'.

I don’t know if it was Mickey [Moran] or [John] Morrison that said ‘we’ll go down the other side.’ I think DB (David Brady) said, ‘No, fuck it, we’ll go down that side.’ So then we went down.

And the chronicler of Mayo football's famine, Keith Duggan, has asserted, contrary to Kevin O'Neill's claim, that an insurrection had in fact been planned in the dressing room seconds before running out. Again, it appears that DB was the mastermind.

So, let us honour Ballina's Davy Crockett, a military genius and a master of mind games. Listen to David Brady on our Hard Shoulder podcast here.  

Conor Neville
Article written by
Perennial finalist in stand-up comedy competitions and former Contract Lawyer/ Coal Salesman with Corless, Corless and Sweeney

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