‘Green and White’ illustrates a different but lasting hue

Limerick’s youth magazine recognises the side of Gaelic games we often overlook

In this viral news cyberworld instant news is available to all who have smartphones or any other multimedia devices. We can now get/send our message from/to the waiting world through mediums such as Twitter and Facebook. We can put our own news out there and hope that our followers acknowledge how significant and important our latest utterances are.

The master himself Brian McMahon, from the Listowel literary oasis, once advised his trainee teacher Cyril Kelly, (whose gems are to be heard regularly on Sunday Miscellany ) to put his latest offering in a drawer and return to it after six months and if it's still seems interesting then to put it out there.

There’s a fair distance between that advice and the rush to publish ala Twitter. I’m amazed that print journalism is surviving when much of its content is available free online.

The newspaper journalist whose news is probably already out there is generally reporting old news. The opinion columnists try to dress some of the news up in new clothes and present an opinion.


Getting the story out there first seems to be the aspiration of all the media outlets.

The GAA was well behind in hoisting themselves onto this particular carousel. But Croke Park is aware, modern and now out there. Many counties and clubs are also using the internet to get their message out there and to keep their followers informed.

Good news

The very able and groundbreaking

Tracey Kennedy

, (the first female vice-chair of the Cork County Board) dragged that same institution into the 21st century and facilitates the spreading of much of the good news from within the county on a now highly used modern website.

There are many other excellent website and Facebook pages that push out the news of all that is happening in this modern GAA world. And I suppose this is the way of now and the future. Online is where it’s at.

Also the demise of books was heralded a number of years ago when the Kindle was born. Then ibooks took up the running. But books have survived. And maybe newspapers will survive too.

In my time with the Limerick hurlers I met the highly enthusiastic and inspirational primary teachers Ciarán Crowe and Joe Lyons many times. They are the staff\editors that produce the best youth GAA magazine publication that I have seen. Green and White is a particularly colourful, informative, well presented publication which highlights all that is positive in the Limerick GAA world.

Too often in the world of Gaelic games we only measure in terms of trophies won and in particular we tend to judge counties only in terms of how many times the Sam Maguire or Liam MacCarthy has been won by the county. How short sighted and misleading is that?

There is so much going on in so many counties that is so encouraging and positive. Often much of this is driven by the clubs rather than by county boards.

Green and White's first edition of 2015 reminded all of the very successful year the county had with national winners in camogie and provincial awards at minor hurling and senior club level as well as All Star Awards for Séamus Hickey and Shane Dowling.

All these, of course, are the shop window for the county and are important in their own right. But the silent majority of participants and mentors get very little shop window exposure.

This is where magazines like Green and White are important. The wonderful work being done by Cumann na mBunscol is recognised here and highlighted. Schools like Ballybrown, Killoughteen, Doon and Lisnagry are acknowledged as are many other.

Young players like Orlaith Kelliher from Kilfinny, Cormac Ryan from Doon and Noelle Curtin of Templeglantine are introduced to the wider Limerick GAA world. There are hundreds of schools all over the country doing great work but with very little acknowledgement

Life lessons

The GAA, though, need to really recognise that the survival and development of the games begins in the clubs and schools and is often being driven by people who get very little recognition. Most of these people don’t seek any reward other than seeing their young players having fun and learning the many life lessons that sport teaches.

The whole club player debate (ie. a properly structured fixture programme ) needs to be addressed honestly. Most of the participants in our games are very proud to play sports that are Irish. The sport of hurling has no equal in terms of skill and speed.

Yes, of course we want the fantastic spectacle of the intercounty championship competitions for the growing audience. Yes, we want the tactically evolving game of hurling and the demands it makes of the hurlers who want to play at the highest level.

But we also want the best for the others who want to play, coach, manage, look after playing fields, support, referee, drive, fundraiser, contact, feed, wash gear and many other jobs that are done in the name of the parish.

All of the people working at the grass roots (Apologies for that awful generic overused political term.) need to have their voices heard, their concerns addressed properly and their deeds acknowledged.

Green and White and many other publications help to spread that good news in this modern cyber stratosphere. And there's plenty good news to be heralded.

n While I only saw Ring play when his best days were over I saw Jimmy Doyle play many times. He was a legend in the real sense of the word.