Earlier in the spring, AIG confirmed a major five-year extension of its sponsorship of Dublin GAA and it always makes a point of including players from the Football, Hurling, Ladies Football and Camogie teams in its sponsor related activities.
If in future shots there is a slightly older and perhaps slightly less well conditioned player on the edge of those shots it will be down to the extension of the deal one little bit further through a partnership with the revived Dublin Masters team.
After a five-year absence, Dublin have re-entered the Master’s competition; an over 40’s football competition that provides an opportunity for former intercounty players and active club players to represent their county once again or for the first time.
The 2018 Dublin Masters side is managed and coached by former Dublin Junior, Cavan and Louth boss Val Andrews with the assistance of Gary O’Connell and Keith Crossan from Erin’s Isle GAA Club. The team is made up of players from all corners of the county including some former legends who make up the 35-member panel.
Shane Ryan, Peader Andrews and Ray Cosgrove were on hand for photography yesterday to mark the partnership. They will be joined on the panel by a couple of good friends of Sport for Business in Teneo PSG CEO Mick O’Keeffe and AIG Sponsorship Manager John Gillick.
Thanks to their strong presence, and not despite it as some unkind souls might suggest, the team have had a successful start to their season, beating Westmeath in their opening game and getting ready to face Galway in Parnell’s GAA Club in Coolock this weekend.
“Personally, I’m delighted the decision was made to re-enter a Dublin side into the Master’s competition,” said Gillick who still lines out for Balinteer St Johns in the Dublin Championship.
“As you get older there is a tendency for players to pack in their hobbies, but this competition provides an outlet for players who may still be looking to compete at a high level even in their forties.”
“From my own experience, only good can come from being involved in sport, and in particular a team sport, it helps promote a healthy lifestyle and helps keep a clear head too.”
“You also make great friends through playing football and I’m sure that will be the case with this Dublin side too.”
“As a sponsor, we in AIG are also delighted to be involved with this Masters Team, we are very passionate about promoting sport, across all codes and age groups in Dublin and the support to this over 40’s side is another example of how we are committed to making this happen.”
There are sixteen county teams competing in this year’s Championship which is an important element in ongoing efforts to bring sport to all age groups.
In the recently published Sport Ireland Irish Sports Monitor it was revealed that 53.1 percent of the male population between 35 and 44 participated in some form of physical activity on a regular basis but that this falls to only 33.8 percent in the next decade, a time of life where Women have now passed men in physical activity with a number that has climbed to 38.9 percent.