Leitrim's celebrations after dramatic win in New York are what the GAA is all about 1 year ago

Leitrim's celebrations after dramatic win in New York are what the GAA is all about

The best way you could explain to someone just how big of a disservice New York v Leitrim was done - or Sligo and London for that matter - is to look at the RTÉ schedule on Sunday night.

Not only were there no live games - remember, there's a whole list of games that won't be broadcast on the national broadcaster this summer - but there was actually a 'championship preview' show at 9.30pm.

A championship preview show. Hours after the championship had already started.

It shows the fears that weaker counties have about being excluded from the All-Ireland championship as it is.

Some pundits reckon it'd be better for them, it'd give them a better chance to win something, stick them all in there together and let them play their own competition but instead of the Tommy Murphy Cup, give it a different name and it should work out better this time.

It's tough enough for Leitrim to attract their €20,000 shirt sponsorship without cutting them off from the rest of the country. Sean Cavanagh reckons the whole system is designed for the strong to get stronger and that means the weak get weaker and that means, whilst Leitrim might have a better chance of beating the like of New York and whoever else is around them in Division Four, they have a much smaller chance of ever getting back out of that grade and, played in isolation, very few will really care.

So they went to the Bronx to get their championship started and what was at stake was a place in the Connacht semi-final against one of the big boys.

They can still have these great moments in the All-Ireland championship as it is and they can still mix it with the best then.

The scenes at Gaelic Park though were a real throwback to knockout championship and what it means.

The on-pitch celebrations

The loyal following

The merging of the two on the pitch

The after party the whole county is invited to

This is what the GAA is all about. The big day.