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Drumragh’s Gareth Haughey Answers Back

Tuesday 31.03.2020
Team Talk Mag

Drumragh defender Gareth Haughey becomes the first player to take part in our new Q and A series. A former Hogan Cup winner, his answers are well worth reading.

1. Earliest GAA memory.

My earliest GAA memories are of playing football at St Conor’s Primary school, joining Drumragh when I was 7 and the happy memories of going to Clones with my family to watch some great Tyrone Championship games.

2. Was your family a traditional GAA family? 

Both of my parents were brought up in the proud traditions of the GAA, both in a sporting sense and with the values that were passed down to them and then to us. My father was a club member, player and then chairman of his home club Ballymacnab in Armagh before he moved to Omagh, so we made sure to get to their County finals in the Athletic grounds over the last couple of years.

3. Sibling involvement or success?

All of my siblings played for Drumragh underage teams over the years and I have great memories of playing in the same teams as my brother Adrian before he moved to New Zealand.

4. School participation and/or success.

I was lucky to have played with some fantastic players throughout school and on some great teams filled with players from some of the traditionally ‘smaller’ clubs in divisions Two and Three. During my time in school I was fortunate to have won the Corn Na Nog, Two Brock Cups, the Mc Cormick Cup, Two MacRory Cups and the Hogan Cup.

5. Club/ County role models that you looked up to as a youth

When younger I loved watching players such as Kieran Mc Geeney and Seamus Moynihan and how they could read and control the game. I was also lucky to have grown up watching some of the best players to have ever played for Tyrone and looked up to the likes of Peter Canavan, Sean Cavanagh and Conor Gormley. In my own club I was lucky to have learned from and played with great players including Gavin Quinn and Fiachra Woods.

6. Other sports that you played or had an interest in.

I love all types of sports and have tried my hand at soccer, tennis, snooker, golf and basketball over the years, all to mixed success!

7. Most difficult opponent you have faced in club football and why?

I have faced some brilliant footballers at club level including Aidan Cassidy, Stephen O Neill, Cathal Mc Shane and Peter Hughes. My most difficult opponent has probably been Colly Harkin for Tattyreagh, the man is a fantastic athlete and footballer and would be a star for any team in the county.

8. Best player you have ever seen play Gaelic football

It would be too difficult to pick just one player from the games I have seen or attended with players like Sean Cavanagh, The Gooch and Michael Murphy all being high on the list. Although he had a short playing career, Martin Clarke from Down was one of the most naturally gifted players I have ever seen or played against and it would have been great to have seen how much better he could have became.

9. Are you a fan of the recent rule changes?

I have always loved playing football and do not see the need for making changes to its rules every year, it will only lead to confusion and poor application of the rules and take away from the joy of playing.

10. One suggestion that you think might improve the game.

I think we should be proud of our sport and not have a constant desire for change or need to look for improvements. It is a great game and personally speaking I cannot wait to get back to playing it!

11. Are you a fan of academies/development squads? Why

I think Development Squads are an excellent tool for developing good habits and skills for our underage players, however I believe these same habits, teachings and skills should be rolled out to all underage players and not the chosen few.

12. Your own involvement around the club.

Thankfully I am still able to play for our Senior Team and hopefully I can offer some good advice to some of the great young players coming through our club.

13. How important is the GAA in your community?

The GAA is a huge and valued part of our community and it is always a source of great pride to see the excellent work that they do. We have some amazing people in our club who have dedicated large parts of their life to seeing our club develop and in times like these they have stepped up again to offer support and help to any vulnerable member of the public who needs it.

14. Favourite county jersey (not Tyrone)


15. Are you a fan of penalties to decide the outcome of championship games?

No- although I have a 100 % record of success from penalties for Drumragh (One from one!!)


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