The Sunday Game's best game of the year shortlist leaves out best game of the year 2 years ago

The Sunday Game's best game of the year shortlist leaves out best game of the year

The crowd in O'Moore Park were gripped from the first minute to the last.

Referee Joe McQuillan only had to issue two cards in the whole game. There was 3-41 scored in 70 minutes of enthralling end-to-end action, 3-23 of it from open play.

Armagh and Roscommon brought their weapons to the gunfight and they played their part in the widest, most open Gaelic football game of the year.

The Orchard led early on, The Rossies wrestled the lead back off them, the lead ebbed and flowed, it toed and froed and while England's World Cup march was garnering plenty of attention on this island, their clash with Sweeden was put on the back-burner and completely overshadowed by what went down when Roscommon took on Armagh and Armagh took on Roscommon in Portlaoise.

The men in orange began like a house on fire with the sun scorching down on their jerseys. They played beautiful eye-of-the-needle kick-passes, these boys weren't in the mood for fisting the ball across to nowhere.

Rory Grugan and Andrew Murnin lapped it up inside.

But then Kevin McStay's fighters came swinging back. Enda Smith led the charge. His goal on 28 minutes, one of the most beautiful of this GAA calendar.


And then there were scores like this, finished off by Mark Shields. Direct, man-on-man football. Take on your man, beat him and then you're away, it was like the good old days.

The crowd were on the edge of their seats for it. Maybe the Rossies are just mad anyway but they were so hyped up by the whole thing that they invaded the pitch so that the Cork team photo couldn't go ahead and the Tyrone warm-up was a little...curtailed.

That was an iconic game in this year's calendar. The sun baking brightly on the first Sunday in July, it won't be forgotten by Armagh or Roscommon folk, it won't be forgotten by anyone who was watching that day on Sky Sports.

In fairness, there were some quality games in the football championship this year, and the three The Sunday Game shortlisted were decent too, but there's no way that sunny Sunday in July should be forgotten.