The Cups That Cheered: A History of the Sigerson, Fitzgibbon and Higher Education Gaelic Games

The Cups That Cheered: A History of the Sigerson, Fitzgibbon and Higher Education Gaelic Games


By (author) Donal McAnallen


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  • Publisher: The Collins Press
  • Format: Hardback | 592 pages
  • Dimensions: 174mm x 242mm x 44mm | 1,642g
  • Publication date: 15 August 2013
  • Publication City/Country: Cork
  • ISBN 10: 1848891601
  • ISBN 13: 9781848891609
  • Illustrations note: colour and b&w photos
  • Sales rank: 532,419

Product description

A century after the donation of the trophies that gave rise to them, this book celebrates two of the longest-running national competitions in Gaelic games. It captures the unique mixture of competitive spirit, camaraderie, famous figures, legendary stories, controversies and sense of joy and student mirth associated with the premier intercollegiate contests in Gaelic football and hurling. The main focus is on the Sigerson Cup and Fitzgibbon Cup competitions, from their inception in 1911 and 1912 respectively to the present day. But coverage is also given to the origins and development of Gaelic games in higher education colleges prior to 1911 and the involvement of colleges in other Gaelic games competitions after 1911. The expansion of higher education Gaelic games since the late 1960s and new competitions is outlined, and the development of Gaelic games in universities and colleges outside of Ireland in more recent times. The narrative describes not only the competitions and games, but also the famous (or infamous) social side of activities, and the administrative developments and controversies that have been ever-present. This is a book with absorbing insights into the world of third-level Gaelic games since they began in pre-independence Ireland.

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Author information

Donal McAnallen is a history graduate of Queen's University Belfast, and the National University of Ireland Galway. In both he played Gaelic football, was involved in organising Sigerson Cup tournaments, and he has been national treasurer and secretary of Comhairle Ardoideachais, the GAA's Higher Education Council. Throughout he remained active with his club, An Eaglais, Co. Tyrone. He has worked at the Cardinal O Fiaich Library & Archive, Armagh, has been widely published, and he co-edited The Evolution of the GAA (2009).

Review quote

" This book is beautifully produced" Scolaire Staire Magazine " It is an important contribution to the ever growing field of Irish sports history firstly, but it is also an important piece of education and social history" Scolaire Staire Magazine