Rathvilly's Brendan Murphy in action for Carlow
When I first heard about the new Carlow Live website I thought it was a brilliant idea, an opportunity to showcase everything that Carlow has to offer, everything that’s brilliant about Carlow, everything that makes us the proud Carlovians that we are today.
Now, I know that not too many people will have any interest in what I have to say but at the end of the day I am extremely proud to be from Carlow, always will be, and whenever I talk to anyone from outside the county, I always try to "juice" the place up a little, Carlow is an unbelievable place.
To people from outside the county they think that there is nothing in Carlow, a small town with nothing really going for it, time and time again we hear people say "where is Carlow", "is Carlow even a place", "what would you know about sport, you’re from Carlow".
Little do they know that we have some of the finest athletes/clubs in Ireland, Europe and maybe even the world.
Look at Tinryland man Marcus Lawlor, who recently ran a PB of 20.40 in Cork making him the second fastest Irish man of all time in the men's 200m.
I have met Marcus on a number of different ocassions and have been unbelievably impressed first of all with how humble he is but also how driven he is.
Let's call it how it is, the man has been given a gift but he knows that and is willing to push and push and push untill he has maximised his potential.
An unbelievable role model for kids of any age, intersted in any sport, work hard and the opportunities are endless.
I can’t wait for the day that the whole of Carlow comes to a stand still to watch Marcus run in an Olympic final, who knows, maybe even win the gold, imagine that, a Carlow athlete winning Olympic Gold!
Then you have the old reliable, Sean O’Brien. One of the greatest Irish rugby players of all time. He has won everything in the game apart from the World Cup, although, the way Irish rugby is going at the minute he may well get his hands on the coveted Webb Ellis trophy in 2019.
Sean is a superstar worldwide, I recently spoke to a good friend of mine Tony Bolger, who was at a number of the Lions games last year, Tony and Sean would be good buddies and he said Sean was probably one of the most recognised players on that tour, people stopping him on a regular basis looking for a photograph, not bad for a lad who went to a school where rugby was not the main sport.
Sean has had a lot of injuries of late but I’ve no doubt if he can stay injury free in 2019 he is going to have a massive say on the pitch for both Leinster and Ireland.
At the minute Carlow sport is at boiling point, the hurlers had an unbelievable year winning two trophies and earning themselves a spot in the Leinster Senior Hurling Championship in 2019.
The footballers earning promotion to Division 3 for the first time in over 30 years and then going on to have an outstanding championship run with an unbelievable win over a fancied Kildare side, a Kildare team which made it all the way to the Super 8s.
The Carlow Oscar Traynor team winning the competition in 2018 for the first time in their history, Nurney youths retaining the Leinster crown beating a highly fancied Home Farm team, one of the greatest soccer clubs in Ireland.
Ya, Carlow really doesn’t know anything about sport…