Posts Tagged ‘training’

Donegal Final Training Night

Posted: September 19, 2012 in Donegal, Mayo
Tags: , ,

A short post here on a great night I had tonight. McGuinness put Donegal through their paces one last time up in Bundoran. I wasn’t expecting to see much really. I thought it’d be a bit of stretching and cajoling with blackboards etc. Sure they’ve been training hard all week and you wouldn’t want them to get injured a few days before the big one. Well I had my eyes opened.

I expected this stuff tonight

You used to hear of how the All Blacks would cut lumps out of each other in training, even before a World Cup final. I never really believed that. Well, if they only did half of what McGuinness made Donegal perform tonight, it was true enough. It started off with a light jog around the field as I expected. Murphy and McFadden were holding up the rear and doing a bit of ribbing with each other, having  a laugh. It was the All Ireland week and you could understand their happiness. Suddenly, from around the back of one of the dugouts, McGuinness ran behind McFadden, pulled a bag over his head and yanked him to the ground. He then whistled for Gallagher who arrived with some sort of pliers which appeared red hot. I soon noticed a small fire burning near where Rory was standing. McGuinness proceded to pull down Colm’s shorts, sniggering,  whilst Gallagher applied the hot tool to McFadden’s testicles. The Donegal hotshot squealed in pain, repeatedly shouting “sorry, Jim, sorry!” The rest of the panel looked on in horror, especially Murphy who seemed to get off lightly. McGuinness just stared back, coldly.

McFadden suffered these. Hot.

It was a shock to me. I almost threw up as McFadden pulled his shorts back on, crying, and meekly caught up with the rest of the squad who had doubled their pace. After a few more simple drills such as sprinting from one goal to the other 10 times consecutively without a break, Jim then whistled for what I thought was a final pep talk. Not so. Not forgetting what happened earlier, he called on Murphy to get on his hands and knees. When he complained a little, Gallagher appeared from behind McGuinness waving the red hot pliers in the air, laughing. McFadden winced again. Murphy did as he told as Jim and Rory climbed on his back. They made him crawl, at speed, out the gates and though the main street of Bundoran whilst shouting ‘yeee-har’ at the top of their voices. Behind them ran the rest of the squad. Locals just clapped on the pavements as if this was a regular occurrence.

McGuinness (left) and Gallagher

And that was it. No team talk. No tactics. Just ritual humiliation. It got them this far. Rory gave the players a tip-top mineral and a packet of mini cheese and onions. They seemed delighted.

Mayo on Thursday.