Conal Kelly Jnr, Mark Enright, Graeme Mulcahy, Mick Galwey, Joe Canning, Aislinn Connolly, Oisin McConville and Conal Kelly at the A League of Their Own
KILMALLOCK GAA Club hosted a line-up of guests on Saturday night that RTE and Virgin Media would be jealous of.
Graeme Mulcahy, Joe Canning, Mark Enright, Aislinn Connolly, Oisin McConville and Mick Galwey starred in A League of Their Own. It is thanks to Gavin O’Mahony and Paudie O’Brien who thought up the idea to base a club fundraiser on the popular Sky One comedy show. They are both good marksmen on the field and they pinpointed who they wanted off it.
“Playing hurling over the years you get to meet these people. We’re friendly with Joe Canning, Oisin McConville and Mark Enright. We knew somebody who was friendly with Mick Galwey and we know Aislinn Connolly through Conor FItzgerald. We had direct contact with all these people and in fairness to them they were absolutely brilliant. We couldn’t have asked them to do anymore,” said Paudie. Of course, they know Graeme Mulcahy well.
Mick Galwey and Oisin McConville took on the roles of team captains - Freddie Flintoff and Jamie Redknapp. John Fitzgerald, managing director of Harmonics, put James Corden to shame as the host.
“We were trying to think of something that wasn’t really done before, something that was a bit outside the box. We initially thought of A Question of Sport but we wanted to have a couple of games in it to make it more craic. We said we would try and copy the concept of A League of Their Own and mimic it some bit. It is a great show.
“We had crossbar challenges, hanging tough, Go Kart racing. It was brilliant craic. It was exactly what we wanted,” said Paudie.
Jockey, Mark Enright memorably got up on Mick Galwey’s broad shoulders for a spin as the 300 strong crowd in Bugalden Castle cheered.
“Mark was absolutely brilliant. He was hilarious. He is a cult hero in Kilmallock whether he likes it or not,” said Paudie. There was also serious segments as Mark spoke about mental health and Oisin McConville discussed the dangers of gambling.
“The two of them got standing ovations. If it helps one person in a room of 300 wouldn’t it be a good thing,” said Paudie.
Himself, Gavin and Joe Canning lived together in Limerick in their college days and remain close to this day. Joe would know Graeme well on a friendly basis too from visits to Kilmallock but chat about the All-Ireland final was kept to a minimum.
“They are in the middle of the National League. They obviously weren’t drinking - they were both driving - and to do that and have the craic as much as everyone else is great credit to them,” said Paudie. The final figure hasn’t been collated yet but every cent will go back into Kilmallock GAA Club.
“Sometimes it is about more than just playing and participating, every now and then you want to give a hand to fundraising because it is not easy so we’re delighted to give some bit back,” said Paudie, on behalf of himself and Gavin.
They thanked the guests, John Fitzgerald, Dromin-Athacca’s Eoin O’Connell, who did all the media work, fellow committee members and all who attended.