17 Mar 2016

MacRORY FINAL MEMORIES – GERALD BRADLEY

2013 MacRory Cup Final – St Patrick's Maghera 2-5 St Paul's Bessbrook 0-10 
MacRORY FINAL MEMORIES – GERALD BRADLEY 
The 2013 MacRory triumph ended a ten year drought in St Patrick’s Maghera and they had to hold off a stern Bessbrook fight back to ensure the coveted trophy was going back to Maghera. 

Wearing the number eleven jersey and scorer of two points that day was Gerald Bradley and he relives his memories of MacRory Final day with the Mid Ulster Observer. 

MUO: What was your standout part of the day? 
GB: The 15 or 20 minutes after the final whistle and celebrating with good friends. 

MUO: What do you remember about the actual game? 
GB: Stevie O'Hara doing the Mugsy celebration is he only thing that stands out. 
MUO: What was is like to play in the game?  
GB: Unbelievable, never experienced an atmosphere like it up until last years All-Ireland club semi- final.   

MUO: Was there any extra pressure as your team won everything up through the school?  
GB:  Yes I would say so and we wanted to make history in doing so.  Bessbrook beating us in the McCormick Cup final gave us a reality check that we would be up against it.  

MUO: Any pre match superstitions? 
GB:  None on my behalf but McConnell and Lockhart had us in our uniforms.  We were the only pupils in the school wearing them that day!  

MUO: Any advice for the boys playing in their first final? 
GB: Bit of a cliché - but enjoy it. Trust me, they don't come around too often  

MUO: What was the last training session like? 
GB: Just a kick about then in for a meeting, the team was named and we were given the match ups.  

MUO: What about the night before the game? 
GB: It was fairly relaxed.  I watched the MacRory final from the year before.  

MUO: What was the format of the day? 
GB:  When we arrived at school that morning, we found out Neil McNicholl who was meant to start was sick, so we had to get our heads around that.  We left the school grounds with a greeting from the whole school.   

MUO: What was your pre match meal? 
GB: Chicken and pasta.   

MUO: Tell us about the feeling in the dressing rooms. 
GB: We had done our warmup at Pearse Ogs.  When we arrived at the Athletic Grounds we watched about 5 mins of the McLarnon Final then into the changing rooms to prepare.  It was all very relaxed and they were the same ones that we got beat in the year before.  Running out the tunnel was unreal, the noise of the crowd was incredible. 

MUO: Was everything still relaxed at half-time? 
GB: Yes, Big Hughes came in to give his view as did the other teachers.  

MUO: What was the feeling at the final whistle? 
GB:  Complete relief. A lot of hard work went into getting the cup home, especially in the schools 50th anniversary.  There was deadly craic on the bus on the way home, hearing what Sidebottom said about boys and giving them abuse.  We were all buzzing for the celebrations back at the hotel.  

2013 TEAMS & SCORERS  St Patrick’s Maghera : C McCloy, C Glass, D Hughes, O Hegarty, C Mulholland, C Carville [1-0], C Gallagher, J Kearney, Peter Cassidy [0-1], C O’Doherty, G Bradley [0-2], D McFaul, Pádraig Cassidy, S O’Hara [1-1], D Tallon.  Subs : P Hagan for Pádraig Cassidy, C Convery [0-1] for McFaul, P McAtamney for Peter Cassidy 
St Paul’s Bessbrook : S McDonnell, J Cosgrove, C Boyle, K Mallon, P Campbell, D Nugent, G McCabe, A McKay [0-2], B Malone [0-1], E Burns [0-1], C McConville, C Mackin, C Nugent, C O’Hanlon [0-5], F Burns.  Subs : C Toner for McConville, C McCullough [0-1] for Mallon, M McNamee for F Burns, J Burns for Toner 

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