GAA | 1 year ago

The heart rates of the Roscommon players may not return to normal until they're back on Irish soil.

The darlings of the early Allianz League rounds were nearly dumped out of the All-Ireland Championship in ignominious circumstances in New York on Sunday night.

Their hosts, who have never won a Championship match in 15 outings, recorded more scores than the Division 1 semi-finalists, who escaped the Bronx with a 1-15 to 0-17 win.

Given the, ahem, delicate immigration status of many of New York's players, the current Championship format does not really make allowances for a New York win, or, a defeat for their opponents.

Connacht GAA Senior Football Championship Round 1, Gaelic Park, New York 1/5/2016 New York vs Roscommon New Yorks’s Paddy Boyle reacts to a foul called against him Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ed Mulholland

With the prohibitive cost of flying their Connacht SFC quarter-final opponents Leitrim to New York and the difficulty with New York's squad flying to Ireland for the fixture, we would have been in uncharted territory had it not been for Roscommon's late surge.

Kevin McStay and Fergal O'Donnell can therefore count themselves doubly fortunate that New York were short a couple of superstar forwards.

An AIB All-Ireland club championship winner with Corofin, Michael Lundy is in New York for the summer but was ineligible as he did not complete a full transfer.

Christopher McKaigue dives to block Michael Lundy 17/3/2015

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While they could call on his countymen Johnny Glynn and Johnny Duane, the inclusion of a forward of Lundy's ability could have made things very uncomfortable for Roscommon.

As could the long-flagged involvement of Crossmaglen and Armagh star Jamie Clarke.

Having opted out of Kieran McGeeney's squad for this season to return to the United States, there was some suggestion the lethal inside forward would line out for New York but it did not come to pass.

Roscommon can be thankful for small mercies.

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Westmeath manager Tom Cribbin gives brutally honest take on how to play Dublin on The GAA Hour. Marc Ó Sé discusses who will replace Diarmuid Connolly.  Listen below or subscribe here on iTunes.


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Roscommon GAA, New York GAA