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Dalo’: Mayo must ‘write their own script’


SPECIAL GUEST Anthony Daly. Pic: Michael McLaughlin

Ger Flanagan

CLARE hurling legend Anthony Daly has told Mayo to ‘write their own script’ and backed them to win the All-Ireland title.
The two-time All-Ireland winning Clare captain was speaking at last Friday night’s Mayo News/O’Neills Club Stars Charity Banquet, held in Knockranny House Hotel, Westport, where he was the special guest.
Daly said he has nothing but admiration for this current Mayo team and the resilience they have shown.
“We all watched ‘Micko’,” he told the large crowd, which included many of the Mayo football squad. “He only spoke in glowing terms of how great his Kerry team were. And I saw Mikey Sheehy talking this week about how they came back to win the three-in-a-row after losing the chance to win five-in-a-row, and that that was just a sign of how great they were.
“And I just thought, I nearly admire this Mayo team more because when you are kicked and knocked and criticised and gutted, by God ye keep getting off the canvas and come back for more. That to me is a bunch of men, real men.”
The three-time All Star also revealed that he spoke to the Mayo footballers before last year’s All-Ireland Final against Dublin after being asked by his long-time friend, Mayo coach Donie Buckley, who lives in Ennis, and Mayo manager Stephen Rochford.
“The last time I spoke to a group of Mayo people was on Saturday, August 26 down in Limerick,” he said. “The lads were doing their last training camp before the All-Ireland and, out of the blue, Stephen rang me and asked me would I have a quick work with the lads.
“I was very nervous going in… but what struck me was how open the boys were listening to me, and how tuned in they were. I knew they were going to play well in the final, you could sense it in them.
“Mayo are right there,” added Daly. “I just think if everybody could say, ‘No fecker in a newspaper, or no pundit on The Sunday Game, none of them will write my script for me.
‘I will write my own script’.
“And I think ye are going to do it your way boys, and I’d say keep believing.
“I hope 2018 is the year. If not, it will be 2019 or 2020, it will come. No one will write your script only yourselves.”
Daly concluded his address by mentioning a story from his first All-Ireland senior win with Clare inw 1995.
“My old vice-principal in St Flannan’s sent me a letter about two weeks after the All-Ireland Final in ‘95. His name was Bertie Garry and he was a great, great man, also my Irish and Latin teacher.
“And it just said, the first line: ‘Chonaic le muireann lá’ and in brackets, ‘I saw the day’.
“It meant more to him than it did me, and I had the privilege to walk them steps, but it meant more to people like that. And I think that’s what it means to your supporters.”

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