SPORTS COLUMNISTS

JOHN RIORDAN: It’s more than the game that matters in NFL

IT’S hard to avoid this repeated hand wringing about the NFL and its inability to stay opaque in our overwhelmingly transparent era of journalism.

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Brian Silke

RAY SILKE: Sam on way to Donegal

MY brother Brian was corner back for the Galway minors in 1986 when they beat Cork in the All-Ireland final. Later that afternoon.

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Eoin Reddan

BRENDAN OBRIEN: Reddan won’t be looking over his shoulder for rising stars

The first interpro of the rugby season slides into focus on Friday as Connacht host Leinster but Eoin Reddan won’t be paying any heed to the familiar subplots comparing rival players and their Test place chances.

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SEAMUS OTUAMA: Bohane tames Twohig to close in on King of the Roads spot

Michael Bohane bounced back from his Flor Crowley Cup defeat with an impressive win over Gavin Twohig in the Jim O’Driscoll Cup at Ballincurrig.

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Eamon McGee

BRENDAN OBRIEN: McGee: Attitude right to take care of ‘unfinished business’

Eamon McGee just couldn’t take it anymore.

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Brian Cody

MICHAEL MOYNIHAN: Cody leaves final door open for Shefflin

Kilkenny have a clean bill of health ahead of the All-Ireland SHC final replay, according to manager Brian Cody, who was circumspect about Henry Shefflin’s chances of starting the game against Tipperary.

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Paul Durcan

BRENDAN OBRIEN: Durcan hoping to steer Donegal into winning position again

Ask Paul Durcan what swung the All-Ireland semi-final against Dublin in favour of Donegal and he will plump for what he terms his side’s "exceptional attacking play", but the goalkeeper was the lead character in the passion play’s seminal moment.

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STAR-STRUCK: Kerry star James O'Donoghue meets the fans after squad training at Fitzgerald Stadium, Killarney, ahead of Sunday's All-Ireland SFC final against Donegal.

JOHN FOGARTY: ‘Team Ulster’ take care of their own

At half-time of what is by now the legendary 2011 Dublin-Donegal semi-final, this writer fell into conversation with another from Ulster [not Donegal].

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Paul McGinley

COLUMNISTS: McGinley relaxes with friends at the Grange

You would imagine Paul McGinley has plenty on his mind right now, with the Ryder Cup just days away.

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Jim McGuinness

KIERAN SHANNON: Jimmy did powerful job rebooting ailing charges

To justly appreciate the phenomenon that has been Jim McGuinness’s tenure with Donegal it would be an idea to ponder this question: in which of his four years in charge do you think he’s done the best coaching job?

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MAN IN THE MIDDLE: Manager Jim McGuinness speaks to his players during a Donegal training session at MacCumhaill Park, Ballybofey.

COLUMNISTS: Not easy to deal with Donegal

"Ah, you’re only as good as your last game..."

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DARA OCINNEIDE: Donegal and Kerry's Gaeltacht connection

It was the Conamara man who got me thinking about it after the second day of a seismic weekend of football at the tail end of last month.

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TONY CONSIDINE: Clare’s young guns fire first warning shot for 2015

They haven’t gone away, you know. Clare’s exit from the senior championship may have been premature, but the county’s younger band of hurlers did not lie down after that disappointment and ended the year in spectacular fashion on Saturday night. 

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MICHAEL MOYNIHAN: Explaining Cork’s Kingdom dilemma

As we loitered in the catacombs under the Hogan Stand last Sunday evening, a colleague from an outlet in the North brought up the All-Ireland football final this Sunday coming.

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Martin O'Neill and Roy Keane watch from the sidelines during Ireland's European Championships qualifier against Georgia

LIAM MACKEY: Tbilisi TV hits spot RTÉ fails to reach

So there I was in my hotel room after the match in Tbilisi, killing the hour before heading to the airport by idly channel-hopping in search of BBC World or CNN.

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Bord Gáis Energy Sports Ambassador Ger Cunningham, centre, with, from left, Wexford captain Shane O'Gorman, Clare captain Tony Kelly, All-Ireland 'B' finalists Kildare captain Gerry Keegan and Roscommon's Paul Kenny. Picture: Matt Browne/Sportsfile

TONY CONSIDINE: Expect Clare to edge a cliffhanger

Is there a Bubbles O’Dwyer or Richie Hogan among the 30 young men to march behind the band this evening?

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Picture: Inpho

KIERAN SHANNON: A dual jewel

Briege Corkery, along with her Cork colleague Rena Buckley, is on the verge of claiming the highest All-Ireland medal count in GAA history, not that she thinks about such things. There might be life left in the dual star so – and there’s certainly plenty of life in this one.

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Colin Keane delivering Clondaw Warrior to score at Galway. Pic: Healy Racing

PAT KEANE: Maestro Mullins working his magic with ‘interesting’ Warrior

One of the more interesting horses in training right now is Willie Mullins’ Clondaw Warrrior.

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LARRY RYAN: Croker’s gain is Tbilisi’s loss

"Let’s have some new clichés," film producer Samuel Goldwyn once demanded.

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DONAL OG CUSACK: Joy sustained for another few weeks by All-Ireland replay

THE end of the hurling year is like a small death for anybody who loves the game. Getting a few weeks extra lease on the season is brilliant, writes Dónal Óg Cusack

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BRENDAN OBRIEN: Clubs stranded between a rock and a hard place

The changing names of those clubs filling out the fixtures and tables are to be welcomed on the basis that change is not to be feared.

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PADDY HEANEY: General Jimmy leads from the front

If Celtic Football Club wants to improve their jersey sales in Donegal, they might have to give Jim McGuinness an offer he can’t refuse.

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JOHN RIORDAN: The NFL is facing into a major brand-salvaging operation

Before it gets grim around here, allow me to get a little sentimental.

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John Shorten

SEAMUS OTUAMA: Shorten powers to victory in Crowley Cup

John Shorten won the Flor Crowley Cup final by two bowls of odds against Michael Bohane at Ballinacurra on Saturday.

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