Documentary shows Connacht passion


Connnacht last night held their premiere screening of a fly-on-the-wall documentary The West’s Awake, produced by Kieran Hartigan of Irish Productions, in the Eye Cinema in Galway.

The hour-long programme, which followed Connacht through their first Heineken Cup campaign last season, will be screened on TG4 next Wednesday at 9.30pm and repeated on Saturday, October 13th at 11.30pm.

Irish Productions were given extensive access to the Connacht changing room and training ground as well as the playing and management squad. The surprisingly revealing insight highlights the raw emotion in their inaugural campaign and their painstaking search for that elusive first win. Despite knowing the outcome, it retains a dramatic quality.

Perhaps most of all, the underlying theme is a sense of place as Connacht, in classic underdog status, battle against the odds.The premiere was slightly upstaged by the man who played centre stage, following confirmation earlier in the day of Eric Elwood’s intention to step down. His passion and own powerful sense of place, along with the demands it clearly placed on him, are there for all to see.

Prior to their home debut against Toulouse, he reads out a goodwill message and then reveals it came from Taoiseach, Enda Kenny. Elwood dryly notes that “at least someone in authority likes us”. Needless to say, it received a wide round of applause but should be enjoyed by most Irish rugby fans.

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