Somme visit a time for Dubs to re­flect, says Gavin

Irish Examiner - Sport - - GAA MIKE QUIRKE -

Jim Gavin has ex­plained the back­ground to the visit of his Dublin squad to a num­ber of First World War bat­tle­fields ear­lier this year.

The All-ire­land cham­pi­ons made the trip to north­ern France and Bel­gium last May.

“We went to the fields of Flan­ders, to the bat­tle of the Somme,” he told RTÉ. “It was some time to get away with each other be­fore the cam­paign started. It’s nice to take some time to re­flect on how lucky we are, as Ir­ish­men, to live in a very unique is­land, a Repub­lic, to be thank­ful where we are, to cel­e­brate life and commemorate Ir­ish men who went abroad — rightly or wrongly — to fight for some­thing that they be­lieved in and made the ul­ti­mate sac­ri­fice. And that’s an­other side of our his­tory that we will cel­e­brate shortly with the foun­da­tion of our state. It’s nice to get per­spec­tive in life. Th­ese guys, like Philly [Mcma­hon], do so much be­hind the scenes for hospi­tal and hos­pices it’s nice to get a coun­ter­bal­ance in life.”

Se­lec­tor De­clan Darcy sad: “You need to be hum­ble and very grate­ful for where we’re at. There is a dan­ger, par­tic­u­larly in the city of Dublin, that play­ers lose the con­text of what they’re about, what they’re do­ing, and the re­al­i­ties of life. It can throw you.”

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