Get­ting your fill of pol­i­tics and sport as party is in full swing

Bray People - - SPORT - DAVE DEV­EREUX

LAST WEEK­END was a mo­men­tous one in the ‘In­side Right’ house­hold as our dar­ling daugh­ter marked a ma­jor mile­stone, the cel­e­bra­tion of her first birth­day.

With the Satur­day morn­ing sun strug­gling to break through the clouds, bread was be­ing but­tered re­lent­lessly, buns baked lov­ingly and squeal­ing cock­tail sausages sautéed into sub­mis­sion in prepa­ra­tion for the ar­rival of the guests.

When the party got un­der way the men folk gath­ered in a hud­dle with mugs of tea and as­sorted sand­wiches in hand, shift­ing un­easily from foot to foot ex­chang­ing the usual pleas­antries.

How­ever, yours truly knew well enough what was at the fore­front of their minds, they’re yearn­ing to know how Man United are get­ting on, cu­ri­ous to see if Wales are strug­gling to over­come a stub­born Italy side in the Six Na­tions or won­der­ing what no­ble steed won the 2.05 at Na­van.

At ev­ery wed­ding, chris­ten­ing or so­cial gather­ing of any sort it’s al­ways the same - a sly browse of the in­ter­net on the mo­bile phone, ear­phones hid­den by a cupped hand at the rear of the church or a quick dash to the bar to catch the last few piv­otal min­utes of the big match.

Thank­fully on this oc­ca­sion ‘In­side Right’ was call­ing the shots, be­ing on home turf, so af­ter chat­ting to all and sundry, saw the op­pur­tu­nity to be­gin the covert op­er­a­tion of mov­ing the boys into the sport­ing den, other­wise known as the sitting room, in al­most mil­i­tary fash­ion, just out of earshot of dot­ing moth­ers and noisy, en­thu­si­as­tic rug rats.

Pre­dictably enough, by the time the crunch clash be­tween Eng­land and France kicked off there were more peo­ple in front of the tele­vi­sion than any­where else in the house and the cover had been well and truly blown.

How­ever, on Satur­day things were even more com­pli­cated; not only were sto­ries of a sport­ing na­ture un­fold­ing but also the not so small mat­ter of who the cit­i­zens of our proud lit­tle nation had cho­sen to help get us out of the mess that a decade or more of greed and in­com­pe­tence have got­ten us into.

Over the week­end pol­i­tics and sport were in­ter­min­gled and braided to­gether like the woollen ac­ces­sories on sale out­side of Croke Park on big match days as Wex­ford Youths supremo Mick Wal­lace topped the poll in Wex­ford as well as G.A.A. stal­warts like John O’Ma­hony and Peter Fitz­patrick se­cur­ing their places in the Dáil.

It got yours truly think­ing about oth­ers in the world of Ir­ish sport that could make waves in the realms of pol­i­tics as well as their cho­sen field.

‘In­side Right’ reck­ons you could do worse than Kilkenny man­ager Brian Cody to lead the coun­try in these trou­bled times. He has a long and dis­tin­guished record of suc­cess, some­thing that’s badly needed if we’re to hope for a change of for­tunes. An­other thing go­ing for the tal­ented bain­is­teor is that he al­ways seems to bounce back stronger in ad­ver­sity and wouldn’t shirk from his re­spon­si­bil­i­ties if the go­ing got tough.

Brian O’Driscoll would make an able Tá­naiste. He’s a born leader, but also still young enough to be in touch with mod­ern Ire­land. The king in wait­ing should Cody step aside.

Rob­bie Keane is the only man for the job of Min­is­ter for Fi­nance. Given the amount of trans­fers the Ire­land striker has been in­volved in, he should be well equipped on deal­ing with vast wads of cash.

Ruby Walsh gets the ‘InsideRight’ nod for Min­is­ter for Health and Chil­dren. The tal­ented horse­man has been in and out of enough hos­pi­tals to know the dread­ful state of our health ser­vice and the seis­mic job that’s at hand.

Cru­cially he’s also a straight talker, which is an im­por­tant as­set given the amount of bull­shit we’ve had to lis­ten to from prom­i­nent politi­cians over the years.

Graham Canty could com­fort­ably take up the po­si­tion of Min­is­ter for De­fence as when the en­er­getic Cork man is on song there’s no way through, so we’d cer­tainly be in safe hands there.

The ever­green Mick O’Dwyer mightn’t fit the re­quired young age pro­file we’re look­ing for but given all those jour­neys from Water­ville to Kil­dare, Laois and now Wick­low he def­i­nitely knows more than most about the in­fra­struc­ture of the coun­try, so he’s our Min­is­ter for Trans­port, and if he showed the same en­thu­si­asm for the job as he does for foot­ball man­age­ment he might just make a de­cent fist of it.

On Satur­day, as well-fed guests filed out of the abode, ‘In­side Right’ started the te­dious task of clean­ing up af­ter the party, bin­ning un­sightly waste much like the Ir­ish elec­torate had done in polling booths through­out the coun­try the pre­vi­ous day.

There’s still plenty of places around the fic­tional sport­ing cabi­net ta­ble to be filled, but that will have to wait un­til the next so­cial out­ing.

Eng­land’s Toby Flood tries to break through the French de­fence on Satur­day.

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