Gavin's blue dawn rises
All eyes on Peregrine's as Jim's reign throws in with battle against Dubs Stars
TIME to get the Jim Jams on... Jim Gavin is coming to town.
All the Peregrine's children will be in bed early tonight. Tomorrow, Dublin West will be wide awake. It's Jim's first official game as Dublin manager. He has already endeared himself to the locals. Two of their Super Saints have been included in the match-day squad, Robbie McCarthy at full-forward and Eric Lowndes on the bench.
"It's great for the club, and indeed the area, that Dublin will be playing on our own home pitch," relates Peregrine's chairman, Tom Kitt. "It means so much to the community. People have been looking forward to the occasion, and it will be a big day for the kids. "They'll be able to see their Dublin heroes and get a few autographs. And the fact that it is Jim Gavin's first match in charge gives it that extra spice."
There will be several poster Blues Brothers in action. Among them will be Ger Brennan, Michael Darragh Macauley and Diarmuid Connolly. There will be extra interest to see how Tomás Brady is coping with getting his hands around the big ball.
And Dublin's Jason Whelan will be feeling very much like home. Gavin has selected him on the half-forward line. He'll be surrounded by Ballymun boys. Ten of Curraner's Colts have got the Dubs Stars call. The Dubs Stars also contain big names likes James McCarthy and Denis Bastick, who both helped to bring Sam home.
The Dubs Stars' bench looks particularly strong. There's seven names there that would get on most county teams in Ireland. Among them is one of the country's finest goalkeepers, Shane Supple, the Brigid's Brave who served Ipswich Town.
Pat Burke is also among the reserves. He produced one of the most stirring contributions of the 2012 county football championship. He hit four stunning points on the bounce to spark the Kilmacud revival in the final against the 'Mun. Crokes came close to repeating their heroic semi-final recovery against Brigid's.
Pat faced fierce competition to make the full-forward line from three brilliant footballers who had exceptional seasons, Paul Mannion, Dean Rock and Paddy Andrews. Hometown favourite, McCarthy, plus Paul Hudson and Philly Ryan, will bring menace to the Dublin attack.
For all, it's a New Year and a new slate. Two-thousand-and-thirteen will see Jimmy watching matches . . . loads of them. Starting tomorrow on the Blakestown Road.
DUBS STARS FOOTBALLERS v DUBLIN
(TOMORROW, ST PEREGRINE'S, 2.0)
DUBS STARS: S Currie; G Roche, P McMahon, K Cleere; A Hubbard, C Guckian, J Burke; J McCarthy, D Bastick; E Reilly, K Leahy, A Morrissey; P Mannion, D Rock, P Andrews. Subs: S Supple, C McKiernan, C O'Sullivan, D Byrne, P Burke, T Furman, M McCarthy.
DUBLIN: V Whelan; K O'Brien, T Brady, J Cooper; D Daly, G Brennan, J McCaffrey; D O'Mahony, M D Macauley; P Quinn, D Connolly, J Whelan; P Hudson, R McCarthy, P Ryan. Subs: D Downey, D Byrne, K Connolly, H Dawson, C Dias, C Dunleavy, S George, E Lowndes, B O'Hanlon, C Reddin, G Seaver, G Sweeney.
VERDICT: Dubs Stars