Poc Fada ,Brendan Cummins wins the 2008 Title
Brendan Cummins Tipperary Hurling Goalkeeper, one of the all time greatest net minders up there with great Ollie Walsh,Paddy Barry ,Noel Skehan,Tommy Quaid to name few…won his third Poc Fada in row in Cooley Mountains in Co. Louth .
Poc Fada, What is it ?, I hear you ask.
Poc Fada in the Irish Language (Gaelic) means it is a long puck. A Hurley (caman) and a sliotar are used for the event. Its tradition lies with Ancient Irish Folklore, Cuchulainn an Irish Legend also known as Setanta would always have a Hurley and sliotar with him on walks. Legend has it that this saved his life when he was attacked one day by a large ferocious dog, to defend himself he struck the sliotar with the Hurley and killed the animal.
The Poc Fada Competition commenced in 1961 and was founded by Fr.Pol Mac Seain from a County Down Club. The Players must puck a sliotar with a Hurley over a 5km course across the rugged terrain of the Cooley Mountains a feat of endurance transgressing, bogs, mountains, streams and a temperamental Irish Climate sometimes with driving wind and rain. The first winner in 1961 was Vincent Godfrey from Limerick in a field of 16 competitors who completed the course from the beginning at Annaverna to the finishing line at Aghameen with 52 pucks. The player who finishes with the lowest number of pucks is declared the winner; Brendan Cummins holds the course record with 48 pucks. The 2008 title he has just won with 49 pucks. This year’s competition sponsored by M. Donnelly http://www.mdonnelly.ie/sport-page20740.html had an international flavour with a competitor from the USA Dan McAuliffe Milwaukee.Davey Fitzgerald former Clare Goalie and current Waterford Hurling Manager was another well known figure taking part on the day.Lyndsey Condell from Carlow won the Women’s Camogie category.