Could This Rugby Team of Gaelic Footballers Compete Competitively?!

It’s the second week of isolation, I think anyway.

The days roll into one another. News and sports reports have been taken over by the deadly Covid-19 virus which has forced the world to more or less come to a shuddering halt.

Airlines are grounded, sport has stopped and daily life as we know it has changed.

The public are being advised not leave their homes unless it is completely necessary to avoid social interactions and the likelihood of catching or transmitting the virus.

To keep themselves entertained people came up with novel ideas of keeping themselves entertained.

Whether it is sifting through photos of the sport they love or testing their knowledge with emoji quizzes, or even showboating their skills for all to see, the people of Ireland are trying to stay entertained.

All that hasn’t caught on for me yet. 

And as I sat down to write this article, I was genuinely struggling for something to write and was scrolling through my phone looking at the aforementioned pieces of “entertainment”.

And I thought what could I do? I wasn’t going to post a video of me trying to kick a ball into a bin, because that would just fail.

So instead I have out together 15 GAA players into a rugby team. Just because I can.

See below and what you think. Share your own.

Get the imagination going and the brain working.

The front three was difficult to pick but let the players take no offence from my choosing. Yes, there is a complete contrast in body shapes between rugby’s 1-3 and GAA players but that has nothing to do with it as my reasons for the choices will hopefully show.

Loosehead prop – Conor Cox (Roscommon)

The full forward has raw power and strength that would make sure his side of the scrum would never creak. With a great burst of pace, he could do some serious damage in the loose.

Hooker – Ruari Deane (Cork)

Another powerhouse for his side, Deane would be the perfect man at bring the props together and keeping that front three strong. A powerful runner and strong tackler not much would get past him. Confident his lineout throws would always reach their target.

Tighthead prop – Damien Comer (Galway)

A bull of a man who would go through opposition for a shortcut. Like Cox he would be a handful coming as first receiver as well. Strength wouldn’t be a problem either for lifting at the lineout (have you seen the size of his arms).

Lock – David Moran (Kerry)

Wouldn’t be a huge relief if Moran was your option in a lineout when you were under pressure. The man mountain from the Kingdom would be a safe pair of hands at all times. His athleticism would also see him get around the field to make vital hits.

Lock – Aidan O’Shea (Mayo)

Once O’Shea gets the ball, he rarely loses possession. Would be great option of trying to make those heard yards in and around the ruck. In games he would have men hanging out of him and they wouldn’t be able to stop him, and it would probably be the same on a rugby field.

Flanker – Che Cullen (Fermanagh)

A complete animal and nuisance on the field. His nastiness would give him the edge over his opponents to get to that ruck first and pilfer ball after ball. Also expect some monster hits from the Erne full back. And he would not be afraid to let the opposition know about it either.

Flanker – Ronan McNamee (Tyrone)

Another player who would be horrible to play against. His list of opponents he has shit down on the football field show that he would be adept at nullifying the opposition’s threat around the breakdown with quick clear outs and big hits. Like Cullen would have plenty to say as well.

No.8 – Mattie Donnelly (Tyrone)

The Tyrone captain is an animal. Would complete the pack perfectly. Full of aggression in his play he would not be afraid to take the fight to the other team.

Scrum-half – Ciarán Kilkenny (Dublin)

Controls the tempo for Dublin during games and is an obvious choice to slip in at number nine. For Dublin his calmness on the ball and knowing the right time to pick up the tempo is exactly what you expect from a number nine. 

Fly-half – Diarmuid Connolly (Dublin)

The most gifted footballer in the country would be the ultimate playmaker. With him and Kilkenny pulling the strings the other side wouldn’t have a what was coming next. Ability to kick off both feet would cause all sorts of problems and he wouldn’t be afraid to run the ball as well. His size would mean there was no easy passage for opposition coming down his channel. 

Winger – Jack McCaffrey (Dublin)

Time and time again McCaffrey took off in football games and couldn’t be stopped. All it would take is just one break from another player with McCaffrey on his shoulder and then…try time. 

Inside Centre – Michael Murphy (Donegal)

The talismanic Donegal captain has everything to be the complete footballing centre. Size, strength, power, speed and most of all brains. Always seems to pick the best option on the football field. Put him in a rugby jersey and the changeover would be seamless.

Outside Centre – Brian Fenton (Dublin)

The big midfielder would be the perfect partner for Murphy. His skills would ensure that when the ball came to him, he would do something with it. A complete athlete that brings others into the game, the back three would relish it whenever he was in possession.

Winger – Shane Walsh (Galway)

The new Galway captain has shown over the short season just how good he is. With his explosive power he would be well able to take on his opposite number and either trample over the top of him or give him a deft sidestep and send him on his way. With the players inside of him as well expect him and McCaffrey to win the foot races to any balls kicked through.

Full back – David Clifford (Kerry)

Cool and calm, nothing seems to fluster the Kerry captain. Whether it was Garryowen raining down on top of him and men just waiting to break him in two Clifford would go about his job with the same class as he shows in Gaelic. A safe pair of hands, good feet and deceptively quick, he would be another playmaking option for this side if needed.

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