With the variety of top class action right across the various genres of the GAA, selecting a winner of the Ulster GAA Writers’ Merit Award for August was something like picking the winner of the Grand National but, after much debate, it was Neil Gallagher who got the nod.
Donegal’s overall display in beating the team that most pundits said couldn’t be beaten – Dublin, of course – in the All-Ireland SFC semi-final was one of the highlights of the year and many of the Tir Connail players could well have been chosen for the award.
Ryan McHugh was our July winner and his will-‘o’-the-wisp performance against the Dubs certainly stamped him as a potential August winner, as well. Fermanagh’s Caroline Little led her team to the All-Ireland Intermediate Football final, playing a captain’s role and hitting 2-6 from midfield against Roscommon while Donegal minor manager Declan Bonner guided his young lions into a historic All-Ireland U18 decider.
However, Gallagher’s mighty display against Dublin, when he seemed to have a telepathic understanding with his goalkeeper Paul Durkin, outshone the deeds of the other contenders.