New book tells tales of Fossa’s golden years

Few teams would dream of leaving David Clifford unmarked, and the folly of doing so was made clear to opponents of the Fossa U14s in 2010.

New book tells tales of Fossa’s golden years

Few teams would dream of leaving David Clifford unmarked, and the folly of doing so was made clear to opponents of the Fossa U14s in 2010.

Still just 11, the two-time All-Star was good enough to play a grade higher than the U12 for which he was eligible and he joined his older brother Paudie on the U14 side.

Paudie, now 23, would go on to win All-Ireland junior medal and Sigerson Cup medals as well as claiming man-of-the-match as East Kerry won the county SFC this year and his talent was clear to the opposition, who double-marked him.

However, that left David free to loiter with intent and he scored 3-3 in the first 20 minutes.

The tale is related in Fossa GAA: A Sense of Place, produced to mark the club’s golden jubilee in 2020. Clifford adorns the cover but the publication covers all of the main events over the past half-century as well as many of the smaller ones, and is not without levity.

One such funny tale regards the time club man Merry Talbot was home from England and took in a Fossa game on a wet Sunday.

At half-time, one of the team complained that his boots were terrible as they didn’t afford him any grip, to which Merry replied the player’s gloves weren’t much better.

Also covered is the wet evening away to Valentia, when Fossa were short on manpower and Kieran Coffey reckoned that, by kicking the only ball into the Atlantic Ocean, he could engineer an abandonment.

Unfortunately for him, a replacement ball was found at Mick O’Connell’s house.

When Coffey tried to repeat the trick, his kick only reached the beach and the referee threatened to send him off if he made a third attempt.

Beyond the humorous anecdotes, the substance of the hard work since 1970 can’t be masked in this quality book.

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