PEIL magazine

Winter 2012

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Page 17 of 71

moTHers wArm uP To gAelIc fooTbAll – the annual Gaelic4Mothers & Others Blitz T he annual Gaelic4Mothers & Others blitz returned to Naomh Mearnóg in Portmarnock on October 20th with nearly 1,000 women, from the length and breadth of the country taking part in a great day of fun and football. Each year the Gaelic4Mothers & Others National Blitz day goes from strength to strength, as all of the players come together to take part in this non-competitive occasion. What makes this occasion truly unique and memorable is the humour and good nature of all of the participants. Every player, coach and official spent most of their day laughing and enjoying the fun with their own players and with the opposition. The day began with something a little different – the official warm up! This brought hundreds of players from all teams onto the pitch to be put through a series of exercises and stretches before a ball was kicked. It really is a sight to behold to see all of the players together working in unison and enjoying things so much. This mass warm up was new to the event this year but it is sure to become a regular fixture in future years. The 74 teams involved then took to the field to put into practice all the skills that they had been practicing throughout the year as the matches got under way. The average age of the players involved was 40 years, with a great mix of players that had played since they were young, to women returning to the game and a large amount that were trying the sport for the first time. Teams were seen doing their own warm ups throughout the day with some unorthodox drills such as the Hokey Pokey, the Haka and even a bit of Irish dancing were used to get into the correct mindset for action! Experience and enthusiasm were the two main characteristics on show during the day but that is not to say that the quality of football played was not of a high level; as some top class scores were being taken on the 11 pitches in use throughout the complex. When players needed to get a break from the action on the field there was plenty for them to do with the exhibitors tents showcasing some of the best sportswear available from O'Neill's and Kukri along with some items for the younger attendees in GAGA Baby. Naomh Mearnóg also had plenty of food and refreshments were made available in their fantastic clubhouse. After the final whistle of the final match had blown many of the players and officials stayed together for a great evening of entertainment as stories were swapped and friendships cemented with the traditional late night sing along bringing an end to the official and unofficial proceedings for the day. It is simple to get involved in the Gaelic4Mothers & Others programme. All you need is a group of women over the age of 18, (they do not have to be actual mothers) and a place to play. To register or for further information contact: or call 01 8363156. Don't miss out on your chance to be involved in a real highlight of the year. 16

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