Rozannato keep team on the ball

Model Rozanna Purcell has promised her GAA team she will take training sessions in her bikini if they win their first match.

The former Miss Universe Ireland is mentoring Co Longford side Newtowncashel in the upcoming series of the popular GAA-based reality series Celebrity Bainisteoir, which returns to our screens next month.

The 22-year-old said she would put the footballers through their paces in her two-piece if they scored a win in the first round.

“It’s a bit of motivation. We have to win,” she said.

The beauty queen earned a home draw yesterday against Jessica Lawlor, partner of soccer star Stephen Ireland, who is coaching Ballinora GAA from Waterfall, Co Cork.

The pair, who appeared on the Ray D’Arcy Show on Today FM yesterday, said they were nervous about their clash.

The match has been dubbed “the battle of the babes” by RTÉ in the new series, Celebrity Bainisteoir — The Rivals, which, in a new twist, pits famous faces from the same celebrity world against each other.

Tipperary-born Rozanna, who won Celebrity Come Dine With Me in January, said she has loved coaching the Longford club.

“They are the love of my life, all 32 of them.

“I am having an absolute ball with it.

“It has made me realise GAA is the heart and soul of Ireland, and it is a religion for many people.

“So I don’t want to let them down.

“They all made me feel very welcome. I used to play a bit of GAA in my day and so did my dad.

“I knew a few bits about it and the lads have just been amazing on filling me in on the rest.”

Her celebrity opponent, Jessica Lawlor, said that while she won’t be able to match Rozanna’s swimwear-based motivational techniques, she has been getting tips from her soccer player boyfriend.

Aston Villa midfielder Stephen Ireland, who accompanied Jessica to the Cork club last week, revealed he started his sporting career on the Gaelic football pitch.

“He thinks he’s an expert,” Jessica joked.

“He has definitely been helping out because he used to play when he was younger. I never even knew that until this came about.

“When I knew I was taking part in the show, I asked Stephen if he knew anything about it and he said he used to play.

“He has been giving me tips and helping me plan training sessions.

“He has kind of let me go off and do it myself now because he knows how competitive I am.

“It has been good. I have met loads of nice people.

The other pairings in the new show feature X Factor singer Mary Byrne versus The Voice runner-up Richie Hayes; reality TV stars Paddy Doherty and Calum Best; and a Mr and Mrs match-up as model Pippa O’Connor takes on TV presenter husband Brian Ormond.


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