Alcohol, sport and society

 

Sir, – Gaelic football is my game of choice, but as a sports enthusiast I enjoy most sports. I get a great buzz from achievement by individuals and teams from my club, county, province and country in their respective competitions. Indeed, the outstanding victory by our gallant ladies in the premier junior All-Ireland camogie final last Sunday brought great joy to Kerry. Likewise, my best wishes go to the Irish rugby and soccer teams in their current competitions.

No less a man than the great Brian O’Driscoll himself backs the Irish rugby team for World Cup glory. What a pity one of the greatest rugby players of the modern era was holding a pint of Guinness in his hand when he made that prediction. He was announcing Guinness as “the official sponsors of belief in the rugby team”.

Great efforts are being made to break the link between sport and alcohol.

The thousands of people who will travel to Japan to support Ireland or who will watch the games at home don’t need Guinness to stoke their belief in their team.

Irish people have always been passionate about sport. The vast majority of those who will support Dublin or Kerry in Croke Park next Saturday will be alcohol free but, my God, will we believe in our team!

As Brian O Driscoll was such a skilful ball player, I firmly believe he would have been a star of the Dubs had he concentrated on Gaelic football. He could have four or five All-Ireland medals in his trophy cabinet by now and, of course, he would never again have to put his hand in his pocket to buy a pint of Guinness! – Yours, etc,

BILLY RYLE,

Tralee,

Co Kerry.