The Michael Lyster Column


I was at a charity event in Galway recently and I bumped into a couple of Galway GAA players from days gone by and we had a good chat. We’re going back here some fifty years to a time when Galway were prominent in both football and hurling but at the same time often being frustrated when luck wasn’t always on their side.

Indeed, for the record, Galway lost the 1971 football final to Offaly, the 1973 final to Cork and then the ’74 final to Dublin and ‘Heffo’s Army’.

But it didn’t end there because Galway then lost the 1975 All-Ireland hurling final to Kilkenny and in 1979 again came up short against the Cats. You would think those were horrible days to be a Galway person but on reflection the ‘70s were, in fact, great days in the West of Ireland.

Of course, back then I was only a young fella with life ahead of me and not yet carrying too many of the burdens of responsibility.

Indeed, so much of our social outlet at the time revolved around the various dancehalls in the area and the many nights of craic we had buzzing around the place and figuring out where the most popular bands were playing and where the bigger crowds were going to be.

Unquestionably, one of the most popular bands of the time, if not actually the most popular, were Gina, Dale Haze and the Champions from Cork.

Continue reading in this week’s Ireland’s Own