Spin South West presenter and Limerick Chronicle columnist Meghann Scully is dating a New Zealand man but there are no divided loyalties! Picture: Michael Cowhey
THE MURRAYS from Patrickswell will kill two birds with one stone in New Zealand and hopefully one is a kiwi!
They will watch Conor represent the British and Irish Lions against the All Blacks and also visit his sister Aisling, who is working out there. Dad, Gerry said his wife Barbara and other daughter Sarah are hoping to go.
“We had to wait until the match was over on Saturday in case of another injury – you can’t really plan ahead. I half thought about it but I couldn’t handle that amount of time in a plane. I went to Australia four years ago and it is very long. It’s a double header as they will get to meet Aisling and support Conor - it would be nice apart from the flight,” said Gerry, explaining why he is staying at home.
Conor flew out with the Lions on Monday after a whirlwind couple of days following the PRO12 final loss on Saturday.
“We didn’t get much time to talk after the match. They got a coach down from Dublin and he was back at his house around 11.30pm. They were very disappointed, very down but they had a superb year considering,” said Gerry.
Conor is rearing to go after nearly two months out earlier this year with nerve damage to his shoulder.
“That was a nasty one but thank God it worked out fine and the break, not that he had much of a rest, did him a bit of good,” said Gerry, who is under no illusions about what a mammoth task his son and teammates face.
“New Zealand are nearly unbeatable at home. I’d said they will be going out to win one test to make a decider out of the three. If they win one of the first two it will all go down to the last one but listen you don’t know with New Zealand - they are so strong,” he says.
Despite watching his son perform at the highest level for years Gerry still gets nervous with injuries the main concern.
“I will watch the games at home. All the matches are around 8.30am. It is the ideal time as there is no waiting around for the day to see it,” said Gerry.
Seeing the first few games in the flesh will be Spin South West presenter, Limerick Chronicle columnist and model Meghann Scully. For Meghann this is personal as her boyfriend Ben Heenan is a Kiwi!
“There is definitely rivalry! We went to Chicago together when Ireland beat the All Blacks and we’re lucky the relationship lasted!” joked Meghann. They met through Ben’s brother, Connacht openside Jake Heenan, who captained the New Zealand under 20s, so Meghann will be entering a lion’s den of her own when she meets the rugby mad family.
This Thursday, she flew from Dublin to Dubai and then direct to Auckland. The flight alone from UAE to New Zealand is 17 hours.
“I’m dreading it but I can’t wait to get there. I land on Saturday morning, Ben will have the camper van waiting and the first match is on that night in Whangarei – two hours north of Auckland,” said Meghann. They will spend two weeks travelling around and going to games.
“There won’t be much lounging around. There are loads of Irish there and I am hoping to bump into a few Munster boys who are playing,” said Meghann, who will write about her experiences in the Chronicle and on social media.
Another heading out – on June 12 – is former Crescent Comprehensive star Billy O’Hora who has been picked as an official Lions ambassador.