Non-Irish communities polish up on GAA terms

COME on, referee — kwadratowa pika! That man was well inside the pole podbramkowe!

If bookmakers Boylesportrs have anything to do with it, you may be hearing those shouts ringing out at GAA games all over the country this summer. The bookies have produced a dictionary which translates a host of popular GAA-specific terms and words into Polish and Chinese.

For your information, kwadratowa pika is the Polish term for a square ball; the small parallelogram is pole podbramkowe - not as snappy as the square, maybe, but no clumsier a term to shout than, er, the small parallelogram.

There are over 200,000 Polish people in the state, and in order for those newcomers to understand the GAA’s unique language — phrases such as breaking ball (wybicie) and sideline cut (rzut z autu) Boylesports have issued a dictionary which aims to foster a greater understanding of our national games, given the huge interest amongst non-Irish national communities in the GAA.

Purists may quibble with one or two definitions — if hurl is the Polish for hurl, how is hurley translated? — while terming someone a zyleta miesniak (a skelping mullocker) is likely to lead to a quick lokiec pod zeberko, or a flaking.

Leon Blanche, spokesperson for Boylesports, said yesterday: “Gaelic games are one of the most important parts of our heritage and culture.

“Ireland is rapidly becoming a diverse multicultural society and we thought this would be a good way to give the Polish communities a greater understanding of football and hurling.

“We hope that when Polish people go to watch games that they will now have a better understanding of what is being said around them.”

The Boylesports GAA Ethnic Dictionary translates 25 distinctive GAA terms and into both Polish and Chinese and also gives a translation of the term’s meaning. The dictionary was developed in association with Ethnic Media.

Presumably it was also approved by the relevant GAA dzialacze, or committee. Otherwise there could be a bit of a burda.

That’s a shemozzle to you and me.


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