As the legendary Sean Cavanagh brings the curtain down on his illustrious county career, we take a look at some of his lesser known greatest hits:
- SHOULDER CHARGE ON FRANCIE BELLEW
Back in 2005, Tyrone and Armagh were in the midst of healthy pure hatred. Armagh were our North Korea and Francie Bellew was Kim Jong-un. In the third and most crucial game that season between the two, Francie was running about hitting boys with his knee, elbows and stuff, like normal. Sean finally decided that enough was enough that day and met Francie with a shoulder which reverberated around the stadium and whose shockwaves incidentally wrecked part of the new Cusack Stand. Bellew’s bones were still rattling as he took his seat to watch the All-Ireland final a few weeks later. After Geezer was inexplicably shown the line by his manager, a rapturous cheer erupted through Croker as the big man leapt like a Torrent trout over Coalisland to field a kickout and stride the rest of the pitch to chip over a fine coffin-nail score.
2. SHIMMY SENDS DICK CLERKIN INTO A SPIN
Two years later and Tyrone were playing Monaghan in Clones. Dick Clerkin never liked Tyrone. Some say it was because a boy from Trillick wiped his eye with a girl from Clontribret at the Gaeltacht when they were 16. I dunno. But Sean knew Dick hated us as Dick would mutter stuff like ‘red handed hoors’ during the parade. So Sean pulled his Category A shimmy, usually reserved for special occasions, and sent Dick into a spin like never before. Dick continued to spin for the rest of the game and into the changing rooms and onto the bus. At the post match meal he was still spinning and completely messed up his shirt with a plate of spaghetti Bolognese. Dick still hates Tyrone. The First Glorious Shimmy some say was taught to Cavanagh by an Edendork lad slipping on black ice getting on the bus at The Academy in Dungannon, before Seán’s Armagh days. Sean first displayed this “Geezer Teaser” in his debut in 2002. It’s said three different men from Crossmaglen were left (and still are to this day) – cross-eyed at the wondrous side step and following point. There’s talk that his shimmy is to be retired in the Croke Park Museum but must be looked at through sunglasses for fear of becoming another Dick or a pile of Dicks if looked at collectively.
3. TURNING DOWN L’OREAL CONTRACT
Whilst a lot of GAA players are lured away from these shores by the promise of a career in Aussie Rules, Sean Cavanagh stayed true to his county and refused repeated attempts by L’Oreal to be their face of L’Oreal Paris Shampoo and Conditioner. Sean’s hair has been much admired by the general public since he made his senior breakthrough in 2002. Despite the holy trinity ravages of Age, Clerkin and Bellew, the Moy man has managed to maintain his untainted barnet in perfect condition much the annoyance of the McCann brothers who have tried to mimic his magnificence unsuccessfully. L’Oreal finally stopped harassing Cavanagh in 2014 when he was caught buying a can of Just For Men in Killyman although he claimed it was for Philly Jordan.
The Dublin management team are to approach the GAA’s Central Competitions Control Committee (CCCC) to initiate a quick DNA test after Mickey Harte unveiled a previously unknown Cavanagh brother to the public this morning, stating he’s to play alongside Mark Bradley in the forward line against the All Ireland Champions on Sunday.
Anthony Cavanagh, who claims to have spent the last few years in England ‘slapping lads and stuff’, togged out for the Moy last week, scoring 1-2 in the first 20 minutes before being sent off for violent conduct. Insiders claim he has formed a sparkling partnership with the diminutive Mark Bradley on and off the field, with pictures emerging of them frolicking in a field in Killyclogher with Cavanagh giving Mark piggy-backs.
Moy GFC board member Jacques Mackle explained his qualities:
“People think Sean and Colm are the footballers in the family but this lad is a real humdinger. He has Sean’s stride and Colm’s fielding. He also has a shimmy of his own but unfortunately it usually sees him red carded as it involves his fists. But against the Dubs that might be a good thing. We’ll see. He’s our secret weapon.”
It is believed that the Dublin managerial team are not buying it and have asked for a DNA test, possibly by Thursday before the teams are announced. Mackle has refuted the Dublin claims of skullduggery, adding
“Sure he has that oul Cavanagh head on him. And he hates Eglish. You say you’re from Eglish and he’ll take your head off, literally. Gavin Devlin has convinced him Jonny Cooper has an Eglish grandfather.”
Meanwhile, Diarmuid Connolly has been released.
By Landan Seamy
Local spy Sean McGrinny suspects that the anti northern bias in the GAA is even more entrenched than he had previously suspected.
“I heard that RTE is looking for ideas for new programmes to air during the championship season this year so as work in my line tends to be quite slack during Lent when people go off the beer I came up with an idea and decided to research it.
“My idea was to do a programme a bit like the part of Question of Sport when they ask what happens next. I recorded some matches and then looked out for fouls. I would pause the play as soon as I spotted one with the intention of asking “What will the referee do next?”
“When I spotted a Dublin, Kerry or Mayo hallion infringing the rules of our national sport I would pause the video with the intention of jotting down which of the four options the referee would go for:
(a) free with no card
(b) yellow card
(c) black card
(d) red card.
“To my dismay, however, half the time the cynical southern ref would just ignore it and that wasn’t even one of the options. This totally spoiled my idea but having 5 options on the screen would look too messy.
“I also noticed that any time a northern player accidentally infringed the rules there would be a certain black card so again that doesn’t help my programme for it became too easy to predict. The programme would end up going like this:
“Sean Cavanagh accidentally touches some Free Stater. What will the referee do next?”
“Issue a black card”
“Some people may think I’m biased but that’s wrong. Take the Tipperary and Derry match last summer. I looked at it again and Tipperary got far more frees than Derry and I’m saying that as a Tyrone man who has as healthy a dislike of Derry ones as any of my neighbours.
Sean’s wife Kate, who has asked to remain anonymous, has said that she thinks her husband is on to something but suggests that he has not quite hit the nail on the head this time.
She has looked at the videos too and has noticed that it is just the most handsome players that are treated harshly by the referees.
“Of course it is correct to say that lots of cards are issued to players like Sean Cavanagh, Tiernan McCann, Mark Bradley etc” she said. “Strictly speaking however” she continued “The reason why a disproportionate amount of northern players are getting the cards is just that most of the handsome players come from up here.”
It has emerged tonight that a soaring spike in the cost of standard hair gel has forced the Tyrone County Board to ask for a few pounds a month from players to cover the backdrop in finances.
A leaked document last week indicated that, despite changing to the cheaper but less effective Boots version of men’s hair gel, over £30’000 was being spent on gel, hair dye and tanning products.
A squad member sent us an email this evening, complaining of the poor standard of gel which left players feeling vulnerable and exposed during the rain-drenched Saturday night game against Dublin a fortnight ago.
“It’s bad enough that the gel is now of a lesser standard than the stuff Mugsy and big Sean used to use in the last decade, but they’re making us pay for it. Tiernan McCann was black carded last week because he couldn’t even see the player coming towards him as the cheap stuff was tearing the eyes out of him. And why do you think McCurry’s accuracy is off?”
The email also suggests that Sean Cavanagh has been told they can’t afford the dye any more and we’re to expect a more “salt’n’pepper” look from the Moy legend in 2017.
Croke Park officials have subsequently asked Tyrone GAA to pay for the extra watering needed for their pitch after the cheaper brand of tan washed off onto their turf during the exciting NFL draw.
“Niall Sludden was completely unrecognisable at the end of the game in that we thought he was a spectator trying to break into the changing rooms at the end. He changed two shades. They County Board have ended up spending more by cutting costs. Pure shambles. “
Players are being asked to pay a direct debit of £3 a month into an Abbey National account in Clogher.
By Aughoughilley Schniffles
A confidential document made its way to our offices this morning, detailing a comprehensive plan on how Tyrone could beat Dublin in the league last week.
The ‘5-Steps-To-Heaven’ memo explains how much detail goes into even the smallest of percentages when it comes to winning games at county level. Although unsigned, it is accepted that the plan is the result of many high-profile figures associated with the county team contributing to the cause.
It reads as follows:
- Drop a pile of euros and cents around the ground. This will keep the Hill 16 supporters busy collecting the coins well into the first half as they’ll already be late watching the Liverpool/Spurs game. This could be worth up to THREE POINTS on the scoreboard.
- Drop a flier to all Tyrone houses during the week. On it give these orders to annex the Hill: Pretend to be a Dub. We estimate there might be a million people in Tyrone as well as exiled. Get everyone to go to Begleys, buy a new Dublin jersey and a lighter. Simply wear it over your Red Hand one and act like a heroin addict when they check your ticket at the Hill 16 turnstiles. Once you are in you can burn it with the lighter you got at Begleys- and fill the Hill singing stuff like Philomena’s classic “Who’s Gonna stop Canavan?” (replacing Cavanagh for Canavan) or “Come on Tyrone, You’re On Your Own”
- Bring out a Brian O’Driscoll lookalike beforehand to warm up. That’ll confuse the Dubs. There’s a boy in Eskra who looks like him under lights.
- Maybe it’s time to unfreeze Brian Dooher from the cryo tank now instead of the planned the 50th anniversary year of the opening of the Garvaghy complex in 2063?
- Bring in a big bollocks of a bus to show how much richer we are than the Dubs.
Unfortunately, all plans were not enough to stop the Dublin juggernaut, with the last resort, the bus, being too big to get into Croke Park, resulting in the players having to walk all the way from Quinns. It apparently took a lot out of Cavanagh who made the last 400 yards in a wheelchair.
Vomiting and retching was heard as far away as Caledon as the Tyrone squad returned for early weekday training in Garvaghey after their chastening 6-point defeat to Armagh in the Ó Fiaich Cup final at the weekend.
The loss to their near neighbours, their first since 1982, caused shockwaves across the county with a reported increase in Mass attendance and rosary-saying since yesterday morning.
Additionally, manager Mickey Harte reportedly sent a group text out to all squad players stating that training has now been increased to 8 days a week to make sure the debacle in Crossmaglen never happens again.
A fringe squad player from Galbally told us:
“Mickey was in wile bad form after that bad bateing by Armagh. I’ve never seen him lose it like he did and he was was cursing and stuff. He toul McCurry he couldn’t kick a rope, never mind snow off it. He even fired a banana at Sean Cavanagh and he wasn’t even playing. Credit to Sean, he trapped it, soloed it and then ate it in one move.”
Despite initial confusion over the logistics of the new 8-day week, squad members have signed a contract committing themselves to the new regime with the extra day probably occurring some time between Tuesday and Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Armagh’s Ó Fiaich Cup winning bus parade through Blackwatertown last night passed off peacefully despite concerns of a Moy contingent hijacking the celebratory event. Seven elderly Armagh supporters were hospitalised though with hyperthermia.
More men and women who aren’t that fond of sport and GAA in particular in Tyrone have been urged to speak out after a non-sporting anonymous clinic in Portrush revealed over half their members were from rural parts of the county.
One particular member, who has spent 44 years in Carrickmore listening to talk about Tyrone GAA and pretending to like it, wants more people like him to come forward and show the courage needed to talk freely about fashion, reality tv and world issues.
Patsy Gormley, whose father played for the club like his grandfather before that, revealed the extent of the continuous misery he has endured over the years:
“People don’t know how tough it’s been. I’ve no interest in it atall but if you admitted that, you’d be admitted yourself to a psychiatric ward. I’m sure people were suspicious of me because I’d be joining in and mixing up my Canavans, Cavlans, Cavanaghs and all. Last week I said to a boy at a wake that it was great that Canacavalagh was playing for another year. The place went quiet and I pretended to vomit.”
The clinic in Portrush, SID (Sport Is Dung), allows non-sporting Tyronians from traditional GAA heartlands to get together and share their experiences within the blanket of anonimity.
Gormley vowed to hold his head high in his community this week and engage in conversations about ISIS, the X-Factor or global warming with anyone willing to listen and will refuse to attend Carrickmore games from now onwards.
“They’re shite anyway. Sure Conor Gorbley is near 40.”
Membership of SID is free and meetings are held outside Barrys on Thursdays at 10pm. No football tops or hoodies.
A new Tyrone GAA Xbox game has broken pre-sales records across the country after early gamers confirm the new features are more realistic than ever.
After scathing reviews of previous incarnations, GAA in the gaming world finally comes to life in what should be the Christmas No 1 game for stockings across the county.
In a press release, game manufacturers explained what makes this version so exciting:
NEW REALISTIC CLUB FEATURES!!
- ARDBOE – If losing, press the X button twice with 5 minutes to go in a game to spark a mass brawl and get the game void
- EDENDORK – Win crucial funds for the club at half time by fixing the bingo game
- OMAGH – Take up Boot Camp training over winter to prepare for country brutes
- DROMORE – Press LT and A to perform off-the-ball skulduggery like gouging and groping and get away with it
- CLONOE – Kick the lining out of each other during training.
- TRILLICK – Win the Championship with only one player in the team – Mattie Donnelly!!
- DUNGANNON – Nosedive down the leagues as committee splits into 5 groups!!
NEW REALISTIC PLAYER FEATURES!!
- JOE MCMAHON – Choose ‘winter Joe’ for bulkier full back jobs, or ‘summer Joe’ for dynamic half-back play
- SEAN CAVANAGH – Press LS and X for the Cavanagh Shimmy. Opponents can press B three times to take the head clean off him before he shimmies.
- DIVISION THREE FULL BACK – Only functioning button is Y, used to boot the ball in any direction over 40 yards. No solos or handpassing.
- 18 YEAR OLD SUPERSTAR – Choose ‘hair’ option to get blonde streaks and ‘shop’ to buy colourful boots. Press B twice to arrive with local 29-year old wag/bike.
- MARKING COUNTY PLAYERS – Beat them up for 60 mins and receive no cards!!!
NEW REALISTIC ADMINISTRATION FEATURES!!
- CHAIRMAN – Search the menu for Derry managers, preferably from Ballinderry, and pay £20’000 for his services in a brown envelope. Raise funds by selling tickets 60 miles away. Throw games at end of season for same reward.
- MANAGERS – Get last year’s Strength & Conditioning program and do it backwards to justify brown envelope. Pick sponsor’s son in every game.
- UMPIRES – Award wides as points to your club without sanction.
- REFEREES – Give Black Cards for anything, apart from county players. Press Y to run twice as fast to changing room at end of game.
- SUPPORTERS – Activate the ‘Derrytresk Woman’ option to whack star players with handbags if they get too close to the wire.
NEW REALISTIC COMMENTARY!!
- JOE BROLLY – Listen to Brolly savage star players as he repeatedly questions their gender.
- MARTIN MCHUGH – Learn from McHugh’s views on astronomy and Mexican food during games.
- TEAMTALKMAG – Try to work out the current score as the lads debate the pros and cons of handball mid-match.
- MARK SIDEBOTTOM – Scratch your head in despair and hear new rhyming slangs as Mark raps his way through big games.
- and much, much more
Tyrone GAA Season 2017 is available in most shops for £59.99
Double World UFC Champion Conor McGregor’s great aunt, Teresa McGregor, is to tour the county this Christmas to give talks on Conor’s time spent living near the White City in Dungannon at the age of 7.
McGregor, who moved to the town for 12 months when his Dublin home was infested with squirrels in 1995, attended St Patrick’s Primary School for the duration and is fondly remembered by his teachers at the time.
Mrs Jones, who taught Conor Woodwork and CDT, recalled:
Even back then he was a formidable character. One day we were each making a chair and he was very good at it whereas the other lads could have been making turnips for all they looked like. He was jumping up and down shouting ‘shut yer fookin mouth you’ll do nuttin, get the fook outta here’ to some lad who said he’d make a better chair than Conor. He was very confident.
Conor was suspended soon after for telling the principal that he’d obliterate him if he didn’t let him go to the toilet.
Teresa McGregor also reminisces how Conor made an impression around the town at the weekend.
He’d head into Woolworths and buy a load of crayons and draw loads of mad animals all over his body. Then the next thing you’d hear him shouting out of the top window of Tom Morrow’s shop ‘where’s my fookin belt? Get me my fookin belt!’ He was very particular about his clothes, even at that age.
McGregor’s time in Dungannon is fondly remembered despite arriving with a troublesome reputation after reportedly beating up 15 babysitters before he was three and getting barred from Funky Monkeys in Dublin for eating the plastic balls.
Rumours persist that McGregor and Sean Cavanagh are to share a sweet chili chicken sandwich at the Deli on the Green at Linen Green next weekend although it is thought that Conor expects Sean to foot the bill.
Colm Cavanagh, arguably Tyrone’s most influential player in recent years, was said to be ‘on the rip big time‘ for a second day around the Moy after his illustrious brother announced he’ll be playing for another year for the county team.
Close friends have rallied around the younger brother who expected to be named Tyrone senior captain next year in Sean’s permanent absence. Family members also confirmed that Sean even handed over the captain’s armband to an elated Colm during a family dinner last week in Dungannon.
Best friend and fellow club man Pat Mackle revealed:
“Colm’s ripping. He was sure he’d have a rattle at the captaincy next year. Sure Sean’s only doing this cos he hates the accountancy and likes getting away an hour early for training and missing the odd Monday. And then there’s the team holiday. Sean’s always nabbing the free shampoo and stuff. Colm’s on some bender now.”
Rumours are also circulating that Peter Canavan bet Sean £1000 years ago that he’d never be a senior All-Ireland winning captain and Sean is reluctant to hand over the grand.
“Colm also said that Sean wants to have even another card introduced into the game in his name – the Blue Card – for complaining to the ref too much, just to annoy Joe Brolly. It’s about time Sean thought about his younger brother for once. Colm has been catching balls out of the sky like a big high-fielding salmon for 24 months now. He’s the main man.”
Locals explained how Sean attempted to placate his brother last night outside the off-licence by offering him leggings from Begley’s shop, a replica All-Star and a match programme from the 2003 All-Ireland final. Colm, reportedly, shook his head and walked off towards Tomneys.
Family members are also now concerned about the proposed brass statue unveiling of the legendary Sean in the middle of the hamlet next month. Colm was due to pull off the cover.
Organisers of The Moy’s Annual Outdoor Summer Gala have pulled off a major coup by persuading double world champion Carl Frampton to sing opera songs for two hours on the back of a lorry in the village on the final day of the gala.
Promoted as ‘Frampton of the Opera’, the Belfast boxer will perform hits such as ‘The Music of the Night’ and ‘Phantom of the Opera’ as well as other well-known operatic numbers including ‘Nessun Dorma’ and ‘Ave Maria’ for two hours. Barry McGuigan, an accomplished singer himself, has already begun training his protégé in a studio in Monaghan.
Moy Gala organiser Calum ‘Rosy’ O’Makily maintains he was always confident that his Frampton of the Opera would always come off:
“Years ago we persuaded another Belfast boxer, Wayne McCullough, to do a whole concert of Prince songs which we called ‘Purple Wayne’ and he was brilliant. These boxers are afeared of nothing and I’ve the utmost respect for them. Sean Cavanagh and Philly Jordan are heroes around here but they weren’t interested in doing the opera. Frampton never even had to think about it before accepting our offer.”
O’Makily confirmed that the only payment Frampton will receive is a packet of crisps and some mineral as all money made by the concert will go towards a bronze statue of Ryan Mellon who scored the first point in the 2005 All-Ireland Final.
The statue has been a thorn of contention for the village as it emerged Mellon is related to O’Makily and he actually came 18th in a poll carried out as to who it should be, with the fiction character of E.T. initially winning the vote.
Frampton of the Opera will take place on the last Sunday in August, before the unveiling of the statue.
By Landan Seamy
Local Spy Sean McGrinny has warned that jealous scoundrels and vagabonds from Armagh may be using the new Pokémon Go craze to cause mischief in Tyrone.
Pokémon Go is a game that uses your phone’s GPS and clock to detect where and when you are in the game and make Pokémon “appear” around you (on your phone screen) so you can go and catch them. As you move around, different and more types of Pokémon will appear depending on where you are and what time it is.
“I first heard of Pokémon 2 weeks ago” said Sean “when I returned to my car and found a man standing pointing his phone at it as if he was taking a photo. I thought he was a traffic warden so I lost my temper a little bit. After two passers-by picked him off the ground he explained to me that I had parked beside a PokéStop.
I did some research and started to get evidence that some people could be using the game as an excuse to get up to mischief. For example, a few days ago my next door neighbour was out sunning herself in her bikini only to find around 20 to 55 men pointing their iPhones at her. She started screaming for help but the only passer-by started to point his phone at her as well”.
Sean warns residents along the Tyrone border to be on their guard as he suspects that the Pokémon craze is leading to a large flux of Armagh people into Tyrone. McGrinny explained that there appears to be a sinister “trainer” somewhere between Tynan and Caledon.
“He helps people to get a Pokémon egg on their phone and after explaining that they need to walk about 10 miles for it to hatch he then lets them loose near the border with Tyrone and many of them accidentally wander across. It’s crazy”.
Sean suspects that the Armagh trainer is helping to incubate Tyrone hating Pokémon.
“I took my phone with me to Croke Park to check how many Pokémon were on the pitch. Some of the people around me were annoyed but I wasn’t deterred. Although they were wearing Donegal jerseys they sounded wild like Armagh people so I ignored their protests and just kept pointing my phone at the pitch. There were Pokémon everywhere.
Probably the worse incident involved the first yellow card issued to Sean Cavanagh. Most level headed people just know that Sean Cavanagh would never have started a quarrel with Lee Keegan but what only I know because my phone was directed at them at the time was that it was an Armagh trained BulbasaurPokémon that walked over to Lee Keegan and slapped him on the face. Lee Keegan didn’t appear to notice the Pokémon (probably because he didn’t have his mobile with him at the time) and assumed it was Sean who slapped him and pulled him to the ground. The rest is history”.
Sean concluded with some advice for Mickey Harte
“Whilst we must maintain our relentless efforts to defeat the bias of the southern media we must also recruit some Pokémon trainers who can defeat any Armagh mischief. If we build our own Pokémon army Mickey will probably win another 9 or 10 All Irelands”.
“A good quality free taker would be helpful as well” ended Sean.
It has emerged today that a Tyrone-born priest deliberately tripped Lee Keegan after communion during Sunday Mass in Westport, the day after Mayo dumped Tyrone out of the All Ireland series.
Keegan, the impish half back who expertly hounded Sean Cavanagh during the game, was said to be ‘shook up’ but has vowed to return to Mass this weekend nonetheless. Fr Jordan, a Trillick native, has denied any wrongdoing whilst claiming it was six of one and half a dozen of the other.
An on-looker added:
“It was a blatant trip. Keegan went sprawling onto the lap of the sacristan, Mary Boyle, and he’s not that type of worshipper. Fr Jordan was in foul form and I’ve no doubt it was related to the previous day’s result. His homily was all about the pulling and dragging that goes on in the fires of hell and stuff like that. A weird performance altogether.”
A close relative of Keegan also accused Fr Jordan of purposely gouging Keegan in the eye whilst giving communion although the Mayo half back is refusing to comment on the details.
This is not the first time Fr Boyle has courted controversy after a Tyrone defeat. In the aftermath of the semi-final loss to Kerry last year, the priest reportedly stormed into the Spar in Westport and kicked down the Kerry Butter stand, causing over £35 worth of damage. He was also accused of giving Armagh natives stricter penances after confessions during the height of the Tyrone/Armagh rivalry of 10 years ago.
Meanwhile Colm Cavanagh has come under fire in the Cavanagh household after the video showed him laughing at Keegan performing a WWE move on his brother Sean. Neighbours suggested there has been a simmering rivalry between the brothers ever since Sean gave Colm one of his All-Stars as a birthday present last year.
Our reporters were up and about early this morning to gather memories of the glorious summer of 2016 when the county basked in temperatures of up to 28 degrees for more than 48 hours.
“It was deadly like. I was telling the children about it this morning and they said I was lying. It was like the Algarve. Cars were getting stuck on the road because of the bubbling tarmac and Portuguese people were flocking here for a bit of heat. Women were walking about buck naked. The summer of ’16….it’ll never happened again.” PAT QUINN (77)
“Oh I’ll never forget it. It was like it was yesterday, it’s that fresh in my mind. I remember Tyrone won the Ulster that year, beating Donegal I think by 20 points of so and Mickey Harte scored a screamer goal from 50 yards out and people were fainting because it was nearly 50 degrees. I remember buying a pint in Mulligan’s bar and the beer was warm because his air conditioning was banjaxed and Mulligan was telling people to stop complaining. It was a mad, mad summer. There was talk of a United Ireland that year but I’m not sure if it happened.” MARY MCCANN (56)
“People think you’re making things up but the in the summer of ’16 The Moy was the hottest place on the planet for days and days. People had to head to the blacksmiths in the village to get steel heels and toecaps put on the boots as soles were melting on the road. I remember fish jumping out of the River Blackwater to cool down. I think that was the year we left Europe and became part of the Sahara for a while.” MALACHY MACKLE (41)
“Some people have fond memories of the heat in 2016 but my recollections were not as happy. I was really worried about Hugo Duncan in that heat. He was elderly at that stage and had a big baldy head on him and I was waking up in a state of panic thinking he’d be lying in a drain somewhere boiling and the microphone electrocuting him.” JOHN HAMILL (51)
“Over a million people were swimming in Lough Neagh on the Monday after the Ulster final. I remember that figure because I counted them with my brother. Cameras weren’t really handy back then so I’ve no photos. I remember going to the game on the Sunday and seeing Sean Cavanagh’s hair actually melting in front of us. It was a bad year for eels as they all tasted burnt.” PADDY COYLE (33)
Tyrone County spokesperson Mary Fitzgerald admitted ‘we’ll not be doing that again‘ after the senior squad’s Secret Santa ended in bitter acrimony and fist-fighting.
The new county bonding initiative, which sees a player secretly pick a team mate’s name out of a hat at the end of November and then anonymously buy a present for them, is a staple festive gesture in offices and businesses across the planet.
Fitzgerald explained how the event began in bad taste at the county’s centre of excellence in Garvaghey:
“First out of the hat has Tiernan McCann’s present. Someone had bought him a pair of hair straighteners and a mirror. McCann never smiled once when on stage to collect his and even muttered something about them being ‘them oul shite Boots ones anyway‘ under his breath. I could see Colm Cavanagh a bit more red-faced than usual in the crowd.”
Apparently, the worst reaction was Mark Bradley who received a ladder and a note which said ‘that is for when you’re washing the skirting boards‘.
“Bradley went clean mad when he saw Ronan O’Neill smirking and went over to him and battered the head off him with the ladder. Then when Sean Cavanagh got his present, a scuba-diving outfit, the place erupted with players loyal to the captain slapping away at some of the new-comers to the squad who were chief suspects.”
The Secret Santa session was then immediately halted after Mickey Harte received his present, a Nazi soldier fancy dress outfit. Fingers were pointed at some of the Ardboe players not in the squad any more, who had somehow managed to sneak the present into the bag via a current player’s cooperation.
Meanwhile, in some good news the initiative raised £300 for charity. This year’s chosen charity is The Midges Conservation Trust.
By Landan Seamy
As proof that Sean Cavanagh is on the side of the righteous, reports are coming in of his face appearing in unexpected places all over Tyrone.
Tyrone people have often been given stick that unlike all of their neighbours the county doesn’t have a saint of its own. This may be about to change.
Mary Lannigan from Moy has reported that she spotted his face on a Tayto crisp.
“Normally” she explained “I wouldn’t be seen dead buying a packet of Armagh crisps but I made an exception this year as they exited the competition so early. I took out a crisp only to see Sean Cavanagh smiling back at me. I was overcome with emotion and would have kept the crisp as proof for RTE but I was very hungry and it was the biggest crisp in the packet.”
As a sure sign that the reports are genuine many of their incidents seem to occur at a time of great despair. For example a young farmer from Cranagh, 60 year old Enda Killen, was quoted as saying
“This is the worst summer in my farming career. I was out in the field a few days ago looking up at the sky in disbelief wondering if the rain would ever cease when suddenly the clouds merged into a formation that looked wild like Sean Cavanagh and Mickey Harte holding a cup. I’m not certain if it was the Sam Maguire but it definitely looked bigger than the McKenna Cup”. “Mark my words”, Enda added “those two men will go places”.
One of the most unusual experiences came from a farmer near the border with Monaghan. The Aughnacloy man who wishes to remain anonymous said
“I’ve been keeping the cows in the byre this year due to the wet weather. On the Monday after the Tyrone match I was woke up at an unearthly hour to hear them out of the byre, running round the field turning it into pure muck. I was convinced it was spiteful Monaghan wans behind it but when I went out I could distinctly see Sean Cavanagh’s face in the muck. There was one cow in particular that was running round in circles as if she had BSE. When I got up close I could see that she was just adding the finishing touch by placing a halo over his head. I went and called my wife. She could clearly see the face although she argued that it might be Sean’s brother Colm. We went and called our neighbour to decide and she confirmed it was definitely Sean but to our surprise she also pointed to a corner of the field where a few calves had formed a gorgeous picture of Tiarnan McCann with his lovely hairdo almost perfect. That should put a stop to all the slabbering of O’Rourke and his ilk.”
In a bid to boost ailing attendance figures at Croke Park, GAA officials are offering spectators at this weekend’s All-Ireland quarter finals the chance to experience game-play on a different level by providing every supporter with 3D glasses as well as wireless earphones in order to hear the sledging at close quarters.
Figures released confirmed that only 4033 Tyrone fans made their way to Croke Park last weekend for the qualifier clash with Sligo, prompting head-quarter officials to think outside the box in an effort to attract the hordes of Tyronians who descended on Dublin during the last decade.
Head of Sustainability in Croke Park, Aisling Mulcahy, revealed:
“We’re acutely aware that there are around 40’000 Tyrone supporters sitting at home watching the matches on TV who could potentially be here eating corned beef sandwiches and drinking mineral for just £30. So we’ve decided to offer a viewing feast by having players wear 3D strips and spectators will be provided with appropriate glasses. So the next time Sean Cavanagh pulls down Conor McManus, you’ll get the feeling he’s dragging you to the ground. We expect fireworks.”
Mulcahy also revealed that Bluetooth and wireless technology will enable fans to hear everything that’s said on the pitch by purchasing special headsets:
“This is a game changer. If Dick Clerkin is slagging Peter Harte about being ginger or something, you’ll hear every last detail including Harte’s reply which will probably be something about the name ‘Dick’. Certain words will be bleeped out for under 16s using our digital delay contraption.”
Mulcahy stopped short of confirming the possibility of a Gladiator style decision on the referee’s performance at the end of the game with supporters asked to give either a thumbs up or down on the whistling official. The RSPCA warned that the lion might not be satisfied with the man in the middle and may go roaming into the stands.
Glasses will cost £20 and headphones retail at £15. A combo deal can be purchased for £34.99.
Mickey Harte, who pioneered bringing on old injured players in the second half as well as maintaining an immaculate semi-shaven demeanour for over a decade, has thought outside the box once more by forcing all squad members to read reams of W.B. Yeats’ poetry to get inside the mind of the average Sligo man and look for possible weaknesses.
County officials have moved to deny that the poetry will be used to sledge the Yeatsmen next weekend by saying it was shite and stuff like that. DJ Cuthbert added:
“Sure everyone knows Yeats was class, apart from the oul womany period he went through writing love words to the Gonne woman but sure every man has his faults.”
Early reports suggest Colm Cavanagh is struggling with Yeats’ mystical period but has taken to “The Lake Isle of Innisfree” with locals overhearing the midfielder rapping some of the lines, particularly:
And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
with many feeling this hinted at a personal longing Colm has for returning to a full forward slot or maybe for a house in Benburb.
A Tyrone Tribulations spy who attended tonight’s training session at a secret bunker in Eskra, reported seeing Harte in full headmaster’s gown shouting at Mattie Donnelly who was unable to recite past the third line of Easter 1916 much to the mirth of McCurry and McAliskey.
Our reporter also described how Sean Cavanagh kept shaking his head and looking at his watch.
Joe Brolly was described this morning as ‘tired, exhausted and beside himself’ after it emerged it was a Coalisland man who engaged in a spot of contact lawn-rolling in front of Willie Frazer’s house earlier in the week.
The brief confrontation, which was filmed on Frazer’s home CCTV and described by wrestling experts as ‘probably a draw’, left the Dungiven TV pundit ‘looking out through his curtains all night’ in case a Coalisland man decided to pay him a visit.
A friend of Brolly’s commented:
“Joe barely sleeps anyway what with thinking about mad things to say on TV and stuff but he’s not even going near the bed at all since the Brawl on the Lawn. It’s not fair on the wife.”
Neighbours confirmed that the Derry man bought two massive Pomeranian Terriers in 2013 after his comments regarding Sean Cavanagh in the hope that their yapping would ward off any Moy renegades set on calling out Joe on his own doorstep. He also hoped the fact they were Pomeroy showed no hard feelings.
“Joe’s very proud of his garden and recently planted a whole rake of Peruvian lilies right outside his front door and I know he’d never get over it if him and an elderly Coalisland man wrestled over the top of them.”
The Coalisland Pensioners’ Society Committee issued a statement confirming that Joe Brolly was not a ‘legitimate target right now’ but that ‘circumstances can change from Sunday to Sunday’ and that they ‘haven’t gone away’ but didn’t add ‘y’know’ which suggests they are not aligning themselves to other mainstream pensioner groupings.
Over 20 vehicles with Donegal number plates have been chased back through Strabane and Clady into Donegal after people complained of suspicious behaviour outside the houses of all the Tyrone players due to start in the Ulster preliminary round game between the sides tomorrow.
News of Operation Dirty Tricks first surfaced when two Datsun Sunnys were said to be suspiciously parked outside the homes of the Cavanagh brothers in the Moy, playing Daniel O’Donnell’s greatest hits at full blast from 11am this morning.
In Edendork, a red Fiat with the plate 89 DL 2012 was strategically parked outside Darren McCurry’s penthouse with a TV in the boot playing Packie Bonner’s 1990 save against Romania in loop, with the windows down.
A Tyrone GAA spokesman revealed over 20 cars were forced to flee towards Donegal after angry locals surrounded the vehicles with petrol-lit moss reeds:
“Clonoe and Dromore also saw a number of Donegal cars parked near the homes of McAliskey, O’Neill, McCarron and McNabb. McAliskey’s home was being drowned out with the loudest version of Enya’s Orinoco Flow I’ve ever heard, blasted from the boot of a 1982 Peugeot 504. Paul Brady and Clannad were also in the air around Dromore.”
Mickey Joe Harte was reportedly spotted in person outside the home of Mickey Harte, confusing the issue completely. He was half-way through his Eurovision hit ‘We’ve Got The World Tonight‘ before being chased by Mickey’s nephew Davy.
No cars were damaged, though a poster of Moya Brennan was defaced in Cappagh.
Fingers have been pointed at Jimmy McGuinness who left his Diary of Skulduggery behind in Ballybofey before leaving his post as Donegal manager