Our man Frank on Tyson Fury’s knockout show…tentatively looking to a Galway-Roscommon Connacht final…and a scrappage ‘scheme’ with a difference!
It’s Saturday night and the excitement is building in Mikeen’s as big-time boxing is once more back on the menu.
The ‘Gypsy King’ Tyson Fury is about to go to war with fellow Brit Dillian Whyte in front of 94,000 excited punters over in Wembley Stadium, and here in Creggs, the bout evokes memories of the great days and nights of the world title fights of wee Barry McGuigan and Steve Collins.
Fury’s battles with mental health issues are well documented, and for a while it looked as if his drug and alcohol struggles would be the defining memories of his career. Thankfully however, he managed to overcome all his problems and is now recognised as the undoubted number one heavyweight in the world.
The big crowd that turned up to watch the fight in Mikeen’s were, to a man and woman, supporting the six foot nine inches tall Fury – and he did not disappoint. The outclassed Whyte barely laid a glove on the Irish-descended fighter, and when a fantastic uppercut turned the lights out for the challenger in the sixth, most amateur judges thought he hadn’t won as much as a single round!
Fury, who claims he is retiring from the ring (although there seems to be a fair bit of doubt about that now), then entertained the crowd with a rousing rendition of American Pie. While maybe not as good as Don McLean’s original version, it went down a treat with his thousands of delighted fans.
Back in Mikeen’s, we too were pretty pleased with the performance – particularly one of our group who had a fiver on Fury to win in the sixth, a little flutter that returned him €60. Anyway, whatever road he takes in the future, there is no doubt that Tyson Fury is the best heavyweight boxer on the planet right now.
Talking of heavyweight boxers, the other Tyson, Iron Mike, was one of the most terrifying fighters of his time, a man that anyone in their right mind would steer clear of. So when I saw that he had assaulted a fellow passenger on a recent airline flight, I wondered what had happened to cause him to hit out.
Reports now say that the victim threw a bottle of water at the ex-world champion and was repeatedly provoking him. How hard Iron Mike punched him is unknown, but he did draw some blood. You’d have to say the victim, who was allegedly extremely intoxicated, must have had a death wish; I can’t imagine any sane person going out of their way to annoy the great man. I suppose one way or another it will cost Iron Mike.
As the Will Smith episode at the Oscars proved, you simply can’t throw punches – no matter how much you are provoked. So we will have to wait and see what the outcome is.
In the meantime, Fury, who earned £26.2 million for the biggest fight in English boxing history, celebrated with a massive buffet for friends and family on Sunday. So I suppose with all that money, he really can decide to retire if he wants to. As for Iron Mike, we will have to wait and see.
Galway did ‘bate’ Mayo…is a Rossie date on?
As you know by now, Creggs is a border parish, pretty much equally divided between Galway and Roscommon. So on Saturday night, after Tyson Fury had done his business, thoughts (especially on the Galway side) turned to the big GAA match on Sunday. We wondered, in the immortal words of the Sawdoctors’ song, ‘Will Galway bate Mayo?’.
Over the last few years the results have been very much in favour of the Mayo men, and yet – surprisingly – among the good few Galway supporters in Mikeen’s, there was an air of cautious optimism. Kerry’s demolition of Mayo in the league final a few weeks ago had shown that they were not unbeatable, and there were some grounds for hope that the wearers of the maroon and white could pull off a famous victory.
Even I, always known for my pessimism when it comes to Galway (and Manchester Utd), felt that maybe this time we had a chance. As I write this now on Monday evening, we all know that we did indeed have a chance, winning the game by a single point.
For all of us long-suffering supporters, it was a very welcome victory, but in the clear light of the following day I have to reluctantly say that I still believe the Rossies will win the Connacht Championship. I realise they have to beat Sligo on their home pitch of Markievicz Park to get to the final – as indeed Galway have to beat Andy Moran’s Leitrim – but on all known form it should be Galway and Roscommon in the final.
Creggs will once again be divided straight down the middle, but the good thing is that no matter who wins, the craic will be good coming in and going out of the final. And it goes without saying that our side will be hoping for a victory for the Tribesmen.
Anyway, maybe I am getting ahead of myself. Sport being what it is, it is very possible that either Leitrim or Sligo could throw a spanner or two into the works. We out in Creggs might have no divided loyalties at all.
So for the moment, we will make do with the win over Mayo and wait and see what’s coming down the road.
Most of us who are driving slightly ancient cars will have spent many hours going through scrapyards all over the country looking for cheap (but good quality) second-hand parts.
Close to home, Kevin Leahy’s yard over in Fuerty was a godsend for just that. On numerous occasions back in the day he came to my aid by finding whatever part was required to get me motoring again.
Although Leahy’s is no more, the car dismantlers are still in big demand nowadays – except everything is now online. All you have to do is key in your car registration number and whatever part you are looking for, and straight away you will have details of loads of different scrapyards that have the actual part in stock, the price, and anything else you need to know.
However, all that pales in significance when compared with the scrapping of a €280 million jumbo jet, which is being scrapped after only being flown for 42 hours. The cost of doing so works out at €6.7 million for every hour it was in the air.
The Saudi Royal family bought the plane for their Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz, but he died before it was even delivered, so it was hardly ever used. They failed to sell it, even though it must have been in almost pristine condition, and it has now gone to America to be scrapped.
I know that things like alternators, doors, bumpers, panels and various engine parts are always in demand for the older car, but I wonder how much demand there will be for the parts of a barely used Boeing 747-8. Usually if an airplane has an accident, it doesn’t be in need of any spare parts.
Anyway, we will wait and see, but in terms of depreciation it must be the biggest loss of all time. Luckily enough, the Saudi Royal family seem to be reasonably well off, so they can take the hit!