‘I hope Ireland hit form…if only to see Matt Williams smile’



I can’t be the only person who finds the stoppages in rugby tedious, can I? Anyways, I’ve got around this problem quite easily…by recording the Six Nations games and only starting to watch the action ten or fifteen minutes into the match. That way, every time there’s a long stoppage, I can usually fast-forward until the ‘action’ has recommenced.

   I mean, just how long do they have to mess about for during preparation for a scrum? And the line-outs are almost as bad. But I’m not really complaining…I’ve managed to bypass those stoppages and savour the open play.

  It was a sporting weekend that promised much, but under-delivered. Manchester United v Liverpool was a scoreless draw, not exactly matching the pre-game hype. Ireland were very unimpressive in Rome, though in fairness it says a lot about how high our expectations are when we complain about a 10-point away win, complete with bonus point. I hope Ireland hit form soon, if only to see Virgin Media analyst Matt Williams break into a smile.

  Much to my dismay (before the game at least) I couldn’t get to Cavan for the Roscommon match. In the first half, Willie kept saying Roscommon had the wind at their backs…then when Cavan goaled to go in ahead at the break, the writing was on the pitch.

  The best sporting entertainment of the weekend was Wales v Cardiff, but this column’s Oscar for Best Drama (and best acting?) goes to Kepa, the Chelsea goalkeeper. He greatly enlivened Sunday afternoon, with his extraordinary refusal to leave the pitch when the Chelsea manager tried to substitute him. I can’t see them getting on too well at the Christmas Party – mainly because at least one of them will have left the club by then.


Just a thought…


* The RTE promo for Saturday night’s Ray D’Arcy Show was full of promise: It read:

‘Ray D’Arcy presents a brand new range of guests bursting with entertaining yarns and engaging human interest stories’.

  Should I take legal action – or just send a strongly worded email to the Director General?


Why Simon stayed…


I’m full of admiration for the selflessness of Health Minister Simon Harris.

  Apparently, during the Dáil debate on his ‘Being asleep on the job while hundreds of millions of euro were added to the projected costs of the National Children’s Hospital’, the Minister said that he is not the resigning type. It’s not in his DNA.

  So, let’s be clear: Minister Harris is not the resigning type. He doesn’t walk away from trouble. He battles on. He doesn’t give in. He’s just not the resigning type. In fact, it’s not in his DNA, so he couldn’t if he wanted to!

  So that’s all alright then!

  Where do they get their arrogance?

A family that deserves answers…

I know that Church so well.

  Castlerahan is a lovely, peaceful place, near Ballyjamesduff, in Co. Cavan. It holds a special place in our thoughts. My mother is a native of the area, and we spent many happy times there.

  There’s something special about that Church, perched on top of a hill…a serene setting where families gather for Mass and other ceremonies.

  The Church is across from the local school. Alan Hawe was vice-principal there. His sons were pupils there. It’s still shocking to think that such unspeakable tragedy would so savagely crush the tranquillity in Castlerahan. But that’s what happened. Two and a half years ago, Alan Hawe murdered his wife Clodagh and their sons Liam, Niall and Ryan.

  On ‘Claire Byrne Live’on Monday night we saw a remarkable interview with Clodagh Hawe’s mother Mary and sister Jacqueline. ‘Her name is Clodagh’ was powerful, deeply emotional, gripping, heartbreaking.

  The two ladies were incredibly brave and composed as they spoke. They didn’t want to do the interview, but they did it because Clodagh, Liam, Niall and Ryan have no voices.

  Clodagh’s utterly devastated family are unhappy about the unanswered questions that remain. They say they have been denied access to Garda files. They have called for a new enquiry into what happened – and why – and for a number of changes in the law.

  They made their case in a compelling and articulate manner. They need their voices to be heard. The issues they raise are rightly of concern. Above all else, the family of Clodagh Hawe deserve answers to their many questions.