Ciara Mageean on her way to setting a new indoor Irish record in the TG4 Women’s 1,500m of 4:06.78sec during the AIT International Grand Prix. Photograph: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Portaferry runner’s midweek masterclass the latest high in career of peaks and troughs

 Global superstars: Sonia O’Sullivan  and fellow countrywoman Catherina McKiernan:  Photograph: Charles Platiau/ Reuters

Peter Byrne brings back to life the many success stories of Irish athletes

Ireland’s Ciara Mageean  celebrates her  new 1,500m indoor Irish record of 4:06.78   at the Athlone International Grand Prix. Photograph:  Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Irish athlete clocks up a personal best, an Irish record and a stadium record

Cork’s Aidan Walsh is caught in the pitch while avoiding Wexford’s Darren Byrne during the recent Allianz Hurling League Division 1A match at  Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

Cost includes provision for resurfacing of pitch; remaining league fixtures moved to Páirc Uí Rinn

Su Bingtian, centre, competing in the men’s 100m at the IAAF Continental Cup last year. Photograp: Lukas Schulze/Getty Images

You wait ages for a Chinese 100m sprinter to go sub-10, then two arrive in close proximity

Dr Crokes’ Fionn Fitzgerald, left, and Mullinalaghta St Columba’s Shane Mulligan pictured ahead of the AIB All-Ireland club semi-final at Semple Stadium on Saturday. Photograph: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Fionn Fitzgerald insists Longford trailblazers are held in high regard by Kerry giants

Gavin O’Brien, named to start on Saturday night in place of David Moran,  came into 2019 without any winning credentials, minor or elsewhere. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Peter Keane has cast his net wider than just Kerry’s recent underage winning teams

Kerry’s Gavin O’Brien tackled by Brian Fenton and Michael Fitzsimons of Dublin at the Allianz Football League division 1 match at, Austin Stack Park. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Austin Stack Park energised as traditional rivals shine in closely fought game

  Phil Healy: she will be competing in the National Indoor Championships at the National Indoor Arena in Dublin. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Ciara Mageean also second in a top 1,500m field at Madrid indoor meeting

Jim Gavin with Jason Sherlock before Dublin’s defeat to Kerry. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Dubs manager denies Jason Shelock has left set-up and says door still open for Connolly

Kerry’s Stephen O’Brien scores a goal in Tralee. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Peter Keane’s senior managerial debut against Dublin certainly a night to remember

US cyclist Floyd Landis   on his way to winning the 93rd Tour de France in 2006. He was stripped of his title  after testing positive for artificial testosterone. Photograph: Getty Images

Hard to ignore its potential health benefits when presented against side-effects of opioids

Joe Gough has been named World Masters athlete of the year.

Gough has enjoyed a stellar year which included double gold at the World Masters Athletic Championships

Annalise Murphy has lost her direct international carding scheme funding of €40,000 and will now be dunded through the Irish Sailing Association  . Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Rio silver medal winner will now be funded through Irish Sailing Association

Chairman of Sport Ireland, Kieran Mulvey: “The increase in funding this year means that our funded bodies will be well equipped to deliver on their objectives as we look towards next year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games and increasing participation in sport across the board.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Overall increase in Sport Ireland investment from 2018 to 2019 is of €4.471m

Fans attending the Liam Miller tribute match at Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Cork. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

New rule would give Central Council the power to sanction use of grounds for non-GAA purposes

Wayne Hutchinson celebrates after Ballygunner’s  Munster senior club final victory over Na Piarsaigh at Semple Stadium, Thurles.  Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Munster champions braced for a semi-final showdown with famed Ballyhale

Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown county council agreed to endorse a seven-figure funding application for the construction of a new athletics facility at the Dundrum South Dublin AC. Photo: Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

Funding application has been approved for second running track in south county Dublin

GAA Congress is set for Wexford on February 22nd/23rd. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Motion 19 looks to amend the existing rule to include provincial and county grounds

Dublin manager Jim Gavin is looking forward to the challenge of facing Tralee on Saturday night. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Manager says his players are smart enough to take opportunities when they arise

Cork’s Aidan Walsh is caught in the pitch while avoiding Wexford’s Darren Byrne during the Allianz Hurling League Division 1A game at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Sunday. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

Latest setback certain to increase cost overrun with complete pitch replacement required

Cork’s Aidan Walsh is caught in the pitch while avoiding Wexford’s Darren Byrne during the Allianz Hurling League Division 1A game at  Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Sunday. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

Player safety the main concern after pitch cuts up badly during weekend double-header

Galway goalkeeper Mághnus Breathnach challenges Dublin’s Dean Rock during the Allianz Football League Division 1 match at  Croke Park. Photograph:  Tommy Grealy/Inpho

Jim Gavin sees improvement as defending champions secure first win of campaign

Sinead Diver set another record in Japan. Photograph: Bradley Kanaris/Getty

Irish-born runner clocks fastest ever halfmarathon for a woman over the age of the 40

 Dean Rock celebrates after scoring Dublin’s goal during the  Allianz Football League Division 1 match at  Croke Park. Photograph: Tommy Grealy/Inpho

Cormac Costello and Dean Rock impress in 11-point win over outgunned Galway

 Members of Sanctuary Runners participating in the Waterstown park-run. Photograph: Alan Betson

‘It is everything to me, makes me feel happy, so I have to run’

Dublin’s Ryan Basquel in action against  Jack McCarron of Monaghan at Clones. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Kerry and Monaghan favoured to continue their winning start to the new campaign

Roscomon’s Donie Smith has been handed a one-match ban for an incident involving Mayo’s Keith Higgins. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Forward could miss Monaghan clash following alleged eye gouge against Mayo

Dublin may not be able to host their ‘home’ Super 8s game in Croke Park if a motion from Donegal succeeds at Congress. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Motion affecting potential ‘home’ Super 8s game for Dublin in Croke Park likely to make clár

The Liam Miller Tribute Match between Celtic Ireland Legends and Manchester United Legends took place at Páirc Uí Chaoimh in Cork in September. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Move comes in the wake of controversy over Liam Miller tribute game in Cork

Limerick’s Seamus Flanagan tangles with Wexford duo Liam Ryan and Shaun Murphy at Wexford Park. Ryan and Flanagen both received red cards. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho

Wexford manager believes Ryan’s dismissal against Limerick had a ‘massive bearing on the game’

Cork’s Daniel Kearney and goalkeeper Anthony Nash following the defeat to Kilkenny at Nowlan Park. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Meyler’s experimental line-up unable to cope with nous and strength of Kilkenny

Cork’s Aidan Walsh is challenged by Enda Morrissey of Kilkenny. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Brian Cody pleased with his side’s work rate as Cats make a strong start to the league

Phil Healy recorded the fastest 400m indoor time in the world in winning the Vienna International in a time of 52.31. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Mageean lowers her Irish indoor mile record as Healy runs fast 400m in Vienna

Stephen Scullion: “I feel like I’ve conquered the demons that used to hold me back, and I’ve got to keep going now until I can’t stretch any more improvement.”

Stephen Scullion’s honesty so refreshing as once again he pursues his marathon dream

Kilkenny’s Paddy Deegan with the Allianz Hurling League Division 1 trophy. “I’d consider the league very important, getting the year off to a good start, getting lads into the swing of things again.” Photograph:  Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Holders can join Tipperary at the top of the record books if they retain their title

Limerick’s Declan Hannon. “Time has flown really. 2018 was great and all, but it’s well and truly over at this stage.” Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

'We’ll have to up our performances another 5 or 10 per cent to emulate last year’

 European 400m hurdles medallist Thomas Barr  at the announcement of Irish Life Health as an official partner to Athletics Ireland. Photograph: Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

European 400m hurdles medallist targeting qualification for European Indoor Championships

 Gary Ryan, Project manager UL Beo and Dr Tom Comyns, PhD, Lecturer in Human Movement Science, University of Limerick,  at the announcement of Irish Life Health as an official partner to Athletics Ireland. Photograph: Sam Barnes/Sportfile

Gary Ryan and Tom Comyns are convinced both sports still have a distance to travel

Kilkenny’s Tommy Walsh in action against Dublin’s  Conor Burke.  “We always said he’d get to the top. I’ve been watching him since very young, and we always knew,” said former Kilkenny great Tommy Walsh.  Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Legendary defender predicts a big future for his namesake, also from famed Tullaroan

Stand ticket prices for the All-Ireland senior football and hurling finals will rise by €10 to €90. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

President John Horan says prices still compare ‘favourably’ with other sports

Central Council decided on a 25-23 vote to discard the proposed three-handpass rule.  Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

GAA president says refs’ opposition proved an influential factor in decision

Bill Cooper of Cork at the launch of this year’s Allianz Hurling League. “We learned the hard way a few years ago not having great form going though the league . . .then it’s very hard to turn it around.  Photograph:  Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Beaten All-Ireland semi-finalists start their campaign against holders Kilkenny

  Serena Williams is among the elite athletes who have adopted a plant-based diet. Photograph:   Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Ian O’Riordan: A number of high-profile athletes swear by the vegan diet

Simon Clark and Rachel Winter who are running around the coast of Ireland for their chosen charity Ecologia Youth Trust pictured in Dublin. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/The Irish Times

‘We get all the goodwill of humanity, and feel we’re touching a lot of people’

Mayo’s Cillian O’Connor in action against Kildare at Newbridge last June. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Mayo captain’s priority is to regain momentum with James Horan back in charge

 Diarmuid Connolly: Senan Connell believes  the St Vincent’s player will not be part of Dublin’s drive for five All-Ireland titles. Photograph: Inpho

Former Dublin teammate of coach gives an insight into Gavin’s approach to leadership

Wexford’s Éanna Martin is swapping the outfield for a spot between the posts Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Mark Fanning left on the bench but still likely to be first choice come league, championship

Kilkenny’s Conor Delaney wins the sliotar off Ian Byrne of Wexford. Photo: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Davy Fitzgerald’s side set up a Walsh Cup final with Galway after a narrow win

 Wim Hof: claimed 26 world records, including the longest ice bath (1 hour, 52 minutes and 42 seconds), and climbing to 23,600 feet altitude at Mount Everest, wearing nothing but shorts and shoes, Photograph: Devendra Man Singh/AFP/Getty

Distance runners and open water swimmers know the value of breathing technique

Dublin’s David Treacy   at the launch of Future Proof Media. “We’ve put in a good few weeks of training. The guys are well accustomed to him now, they’re well used to him [Kenny]”.  Photograph:  Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Cuala star David Treacy says former Cuala manager working hard in new county role

Dublin footballer and Connolly Hospital Blanchardstown anaesthesiologist, Noelle Healy clashes with Noelle Connolly of Galway in the Ladies Senior All-Ireland Football championship semi-final at Dr Hyde Park in Roscommon on August 25th, 2018 Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Dublin ladies’ footballer on her medical career and looking ahead to 2019 season

 Ian Burke: “You’ve just kind of got to play the rules as they are, it’s not something that I would have paid too much heed to.” Photograph:  Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Corofin forward playing mix and match between club and county at present

The new site was put in place not long after the original track at the Belfield end of UCD was suddenly closed in November 2011. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Hopes high that badly-needed facility can be completed by the summer of 2020

Shane Carty in actin during last year’s O’Byrne Cup. “I’m absolutely touched by all the messages and well wishes, and more importantly to hear of someone who has gone out and sought help now.” Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Dublin footballer on the challenges of tackling his mental health issues

 Dublin hurling manager Mattie Kenny: his side enjoyed a narrow two-point win over Laois on Sunday. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Jim Gavin’s side face Meath while Mattie Kenny’s men go up against Galway

 Ireland’s Thomas Barr crosses the line to secure his bronze medal. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Barr goes one better than Rio to join elite list of Irish medal winners

Gerard Prendergast with his two sons.

Ballymun dad is close to completing 52 triathlons in 52 weeks

The Irish Women’s Hockey Team, who won Outstanding Contribution to Sport  award at the Irish Times/Sport Ireland Sportswoman of the Year 2018 awards. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

World champion boxer Kellie Harrington named Sportswoman of the Year 2018

There are more Goal Mile runs this year than ever.

This Christmas there are 132 Goal Miles scheduled in almost every county

DCU’s Niall Moyna  at the  GAA launch of  the  online GAA learning portal LCPE.ie, which supports the introduction of Physical Education at Higher and Ordinary Level in the Leaving Certificate Examination. Photograph:  Seb Daly/Sportsfile

New pilot scheme currently running in 80 of the country’s secondary schools

Katie-George Dunlevy and Eve McCrystal, Ayeisha McFerran and Sarah Healy feature in this group.

A World Cup finalist, a world record holder and world championship gold medalists

Phil Healy, Cora Staunton and Fiona McHale make up the nominees.

Athletics, Gaelic football and Australian Rules are all included in our first three

Dublin ladies senior football manager Mick Bohan at the launch of the GAA learning portal LCPE.ie in Croke Park on Tuesday. Photograph: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

The manager of Dublin’s women footballers is looking to a third successive All-Ireland

 Jim Gavin may well end up chasing seven All-Irelands in succession by 2021, if his recent championship record continues.

Gavin extends his time in charge of Dublin footballers until 2021

Niall Moyna: “The GAA in a way has lost the run of itself. It became totally consumed with generating revenue to the detriment of club football.” Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Respected coach believes clubs being increasingly put into an impossible position

Former Dublin manager Mickey Whelan at the launch of the GAA’s online GAA learning portal LCPE.ie at Croke Park. Photograph:  Seb Daly/Sportsfile

‘These guys go out expecting to win and it’s difficult to get people to get to that level’

The 2017  Dublin Marathon. The number of entries have hit 20,000. Photograph: Ryan Byrne

Entries for 2019, on the 40th anniversary, are already sold out – prepare for sweet insanity

Mattie Kenny: Dublin’s new hurling manager saw his charges defeat Carlow in the Walsh Cup in  midweek and they take on Offaly at Parnell Park on Sunday. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Meath aiming to build on impressive first outing in O’Byrne Cup

Dublin star Cian O’Sullivan helping to launch the GOAL Mile   with Caoimhe (13), Rossa  (9), Cuan (11) and Saoirse (6) in Herbert Park, Duiblin 4.   Now in its 37th year, the annual event will see tens of thousands people run, jog or walk 130 Miles across the country over the Christmas period. Photo: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland

Dublin stalwart says lesson of club final defeat will not be lost on Kilmacud colleagues

Ireland’s Mick Clohisey running the European Cross Country in  Tilburg, the Netherlands. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

The Dublin race comes three weeks after the marathon at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, Qatar

Sonia O’Sullivan with the four athletes who are participating in the new Accelerator Academy: Sophie O’Sullivan, Patience Jumbo-Gula, Sarah Healy and Rhasidat Adeleke. Photograph: Marc O’Sullivan

Sonia O’Sullivan and David Matthews have set up the Accelerator Academy

Arthur Lanigan-O’Keeffe, Ireland modern pentathlete; Patricia Heberle, chef de mission for Tokyo 2020; John Treacy, chief executive of Sport Ireland; Sarah Keane, OFI president; and Nicci Daly, an Ireland international hockey player, at the  launch  of new performance supports ahead of Tokyo 2020. Photograph:  Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Former Australian hockey player Patricia Heberle named Team Ireland chef de mission

Former Donegal manager Jim McGuinness is the new coach of Charlotte Independence. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Former Donegal manager looking forward to new challenge with Charlotte Independence

Dublin’s Philip McMahon celebrating this year’s All-Ireland win. “I think Dublin are an exceptional football team, and will continue to move forward,” says Jim McGuinness. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Former Donegal manager says proposed football rule changes may help close the gap on Dublin

 Runners at the start line in the 2018 Dublin Marathon. Photograph: Oisin Keniry/Inpho

All 20,000 entries for next year’s race have sold out 10 and a half months in advance

Sarah Healy fell during the Women’s Under-20 race at the European Cross Country Championships. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Ireland finish fifth in Tilburg as Healy’s fall costs her a shot an Under-20 medal

Kevin Dooney of Raheny Shamrocks A.C winning the mens senior race at the Irish National Cross Country Championships last month. Photo: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Depression, like addiction, is often repetitious and often affects the same athletes

Jake Malone: “He’ll [Kenny]   have us in the best position come league, come championship.” Photograph:  Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Cuala stalwart confident his former club boss will bring real expertise to the county’s cause

Jonny Cooper: “I think it’s a dangerous game to try and manipulate rules to make the viewing of the game better.” Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Defender says he will need to play under the new rules “to make a full judgement call’

Sarah Healy: “For the under-18s there was a bit of pressure because I’d run some good times before I went. For an under-20 race there’s no pressure, it’s just see what happens, so I think there’s less pressure”

Leading the senior races for Ireland will be Kevin Dooney and Ciara Mageean

Dublin’s Jonny Cooper celebrates with Dublin County Board chief John Costello after winning the All-Ireland final. Photograph: Inpho

Dublin GAA’s chief executive fears new rules may become detrimental to the game

Mullinalaghta’s Conan Brady, Cian McElligott and Luke Meehan celebrate their win over Éire Óg in the Leinster SFC semi-final at  Glennon Brothers Pearse Park, Longford last month. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Club facing David-and-Goliath battle with twice All-Ireland champions Kilmacud Crokes

Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge  setting a new world record when winning the Berlin Marathon on September 16th, 2018. Photograph:  Getty Images

Kenyan has us believing in the impossible again – the sub-two-hour marathon

The Dublin Masters team. The 2018 Masters competition culminated in September when  Dublin beat Tyrone  1-14 to 1-12 in the final

The Gaelic Masters Association runs the fast growing over-40s game

Ireland’s Thomas Barr celebrates winning bronze at the European Athletics Championships in Berlin. Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

The Ferrybank man provided the standout moment of 2018 with bronze in Berlin

Eddie Brennan: “There’s freedom to go and hurl. And it’s massive bonus territory for someone like me.”  Photograph:  David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile

Eight-time All-Ireland winner set to face Portlaoise in Leinster intermediate final

 Daire Ó Baoill: “We were 12-1 to win it [the Donegal championship] this year, look how it just worked out for us.   Photograph:  David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile

Midfielder Ó Baoill leading by example as the club bid for a historic first Ulster club title

Mary Purcell who finished sixth, congratulates the winner Gretta Waitz from Norway in the 1979 World Cross Country championships  in Limerick. Photograph: Pat Langan

Whether it was racing against men or running without a bra the Dubliner went her own way

Meath players huddle ahead of their O’Byrne Cup semi-final against Longford last year. Photo: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

O’Byrne Cup and Dr McKenna Cup the first competitions to feature the new rules

Mullinalaghta’s Conan Brady and Aidan McElligott celebrate the semi-final victory over Éire Óg at Pearse Park, Longford. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Tiny Longford ‘half parish’ face Kilmacud in a classic David versus Goliath test

Sarah Healy winning the junior women’s race at  the National Cross Country Championships at the National Sports Campus, Abbotstown. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Sarah Healy hoping to add to double gold she won at European under-18s

Ciara Mageean will lead the 39-strong Irish team at next month’s European Cross Country Championships. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Kevin Dooney and Ciara Mageean to lead 39-strong squad in Tilburg on December 9th

Sarah Healy of Blackrock AC on her way to winning the Junior women’s race in the Irish Life Health National Cross Country Championships on Sunday. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

The 17-year-old is eyeing up shot at upcoming European Cross-Country in the Netherlands

Ireland’s Sean Tobin during The Morton Mile. His confession this week is another reminder that too much success can ruin any athlete as surely as too much failure. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Athletes who don’t make it to Olympic or World stage aren’t necessarily failures

Sean Tobin in the European Cross Country Championships,  Slovakia, 2017.  Photograph: INPHO/Sasa Pahic Szabo

Sean Tobin talks about coming close to being another scholarship statistic

Micheál Burns: “We know we have a good side at the moment, and want to win as much as we can while we have it.” Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Former Kerry star’s presence on the bench keeps real pressure on starting forwards

Ian Burke: “We’re just trying to grind out results and if we can do that playing swashbuckling stuff or with a good battle we don’t really mind”  Photograph: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Galway’s All Star taking nothing for granted as club seek to retain their Connacht crown

Michael Briody: “We are relying on and expect county delegates to address this issue head on.” Photograph: Ryan Byrne/Inpho

Club players’ body in favour of an immediate review of the national games programme

On November 21st 1920 14 civilians were killed in Croke Park during a GAA match. Photo: Oisin Keniry/Inpho

John William Scott was killed when British army and police opened fire in Croke Park

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