On to the next chapter…



Congratulations to all the students in Co. Roscommon and beyond who received their Leaving Certificate results this week. I’m one of those who believes it’s a largely unfair and out of date system…but there you go.


  The general consensus locally is that students, parents and teachers were – by and large – pleased with how the Leaving Certificate ‘Class of 2019’ fared.


  There’s too much pressure on students these days and I have no doubt that those who sat the exams will be relieved and delighted that the long wait is over. Regardless of what points total you achieved, the world is your oyster. Today’s young people can achieve whatever they set out to achieve. An individual exam has nothing on hard work, common sense and good old-fashioned determination. On behalf of all our readers, I wish the Class of 2019 all the very best in the future.


Lame leaders!

Seriously…if Boris and Leo (and their officials) cannot agree on whether or not – not to mention where and when – they are meeting, can we really expect them to run their respective countries?


Cricket? Nah? Well, maybe…


The attitude of a lot of Irish people (certainly not all) to cricket over the centuries: ‘Nah…not for me…don’t even understand the rules, plus it’s boring’.


  The attitude of a lot of Irish people to cricket when England recently won the Cricket World Cup…a bit alarmed, a bit relieved it wasn’t the soccer…on reflection, happy enough, but fairly indifferent.


  The attitude of a lot of Irish people to cricket when Ireland, a week on from England’s World Cup win, started beating the new champions in a Test match: ‘Eh…did you see the cricket? We bowled England out for 85 this morning! We’re doing brilliant in the cricket! Any update on the cricket?!’


  The attitude of a lot of Irish people to cricket when England struck back – to win. ‘The cricket? What cricket? Sure that’s an English game…bring on the hurling and football!’


Saving Eoghan…


In politics, nothing can be taken for granted.


  Eoghan Murphy was well on his way to winning the ‘Worst Politician of the Year’ Award…but then there was a massive swing in the direction of Maria Bailey, and now she has taken the honours…


Small crowds…Could it be the football?


Most people were shocked by the small attendance (not much more than 30,000) at the Tyrone/Kerry All-Ireland Senior Football semi-final on Sunday.


  I’m not sure that the main reason was the sense that Dublin are unbeatable. I do think that the costs being incurred by families – particularly with qualifier games and now the Super 8s – is a big factor in falling attendances.


  But I was amused that very few commentators mentioned what must be a primary reason…i.e. the tedious nature of much of the football.


  Tyrone’s style of play – and very often the modern game generally – is boring and very difficult to watch.




Seeking a stand-in…


They’re all decent people, but I’ve had enough of these stand-in radio presenters already…


  If it’s ‘Today with Sean O’Rourke’, we want Sean…ditto with ‘The Pat Kenny Show’ and so on. True, people are entitled to holidays, but the ‘stand-in’ blitz every August, coupled with the increasingly frivolous content, leaves us with duller radio.


  Until normal service has resumed, someone will have to ‘stand in’ for this listener…


Political Love Island…


It’s off air at the moment…but will be back soon. On Political Love Island (nightly, Virgin Media, with Matt Cooper and Ivan Yates) Roscommon/Galway TD Michael Fitzmaurice remains one of the most popular islanders, as he’s always there – and it looks like he always with be.


  But, drama during summer of 2019 in the form of a familiar face…hinting that he might become a potential rival for the affections of Matt and Ivan…i.e. Denis Naughten, who suddenly started appearing as a guest on Political Love Island. Just now, Michael Fitz remains the firm favourite, but he’s not having it all his own way.


  Now, as autumn looms, and with normal current affairs coverage on TV to resume soon, the question is: Will Eugene (Murphy) enter the fray to further change the dynamic on Political Love Island?


Lilly graces Croker…


Last Saturday was a memorable day for one young Roscommon footballer when Lilly Murray (12) got the opportunity to play during half-time in the All-Ireland Senior Football semi-final at Croke Park.


  Lilly, a pupil of Ballymurray NS, was the sole Roscommon representative amongst the 42 children who featured in the GAA/INTO Cumann na mBunscol Respect Education Go Games.


  Representing their primary schools, the children took part in exhibition games at half-time in the Dublin/Mayo game…in front of an attendance of over 83,000 people!


  Lilly is daughter of Anne Marie and Liam Murray of Kilcash, Rahara, Co. Roscommon.


 Lilly, who plays with St. Dominics GAA Club, did have to line out in a Mayo jersey, but that was a small price to pay for what was a wonderful experience – and a great honour! (The 42 children involved on Saturday donned the jerseys of Mayo and Dublin for the exhibition games).


  It was an unforgettable experience for Lilly and for all involved, particularly given the tremendous atmosphere generated by the Dublin and Mayo fans in what was the most high profile and eagerly awaited GAA game played at Croke Park so far this year.