Just A Thought
Every inter-county star’s sporting journey begins with the club, rooted with their family, community and friends.
For the Mayo quartet of Alan Dillon, Cillian O’Connor, Diarmuid O’Connor and Jason Gibbons, Ballintubber is their place.
Having managed all four at various stages of their football careers, Ballintubber Coaching Officer Tony Duffy knows them better than most.
“It’s nice to think that the club has played some part in their development. It was football, football, football all the way with each of them when they were growing up. I’m not surprised to see them now playing at the highest level. They’re really, really good clubmen who I’d fully expect to get involved with coaching our underage teams when they finish with Mayo. If there isn’t county training at the same time, they’re down in the pitch supporting their club-mates. They’re role models for the youngsters in the club.”
Tony sees his role as Ballintubber coaching officer as “trying to maximise the young talent that’s available and keeping the production line going”.
We’ve won three senior championships in the last six years and would obviously like to win a few more. We have a five-year plan in place at underage level which we hope will lead to further success and as many players as possible continuing their playing careers into adulthood. While we compete mostly in the ‘B’ and ‘C’ underage grades, it hasn’t been a barrier to us succeeding at senior level.”