There is a lot of good viewing to look forward to for GAA supporters on TG4 in the coming weeks...
Poc na nGael
(Tonight, Wednesday, September 6th, 9.30pm)
Ice hockey is a national obsession in Canada. This fascinating documentary reveals how the Irish created the sport and played a key role in developing the game from its inception on a frozen pond in Nova Scotia to the ultra-modern arenas of today. Presented by hurling legend Ger Loughnane, the programme travels across the country to uncover the story of the Irish in Canada through the sport of hockey. What he reveals is the incredible contribution of Irish immigrants in creating and developing a sport that would help define the new nation of Canada. Filming Locations: Nova Scotia, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto & Áth Cliath.
Níos Mó Ná Cluiche (More Than A Game) - The Story of the GAA in Ulster
(Wednesday, September 13th and Wednesday, September 20th, 9.30pm)
The importance and far-reaching influence of the GAA on many aspects of Irish life at home and abroad is acknowledged as is the reach it has into communities all over Ireland. This is even stronger in Ulster, where the GAA has its own unique story as of how the organisation has evolved here through the decades. In a new two part series, Jarlath Burns, former Armagh football captain and a well-known broadcaster, explores the history of Gaelic games in the province. He discovers this is a story of people, passion, place and parish. He looks at how the Troubles impacted on the Association and how it has survived and thrived through some of the toughest challenges in its history.
Interweaving the history of the games with access-all-areas footage from the 2016 Gaelic games season, and using previously unseen archive, the series captures the grassroots commitment in clubs and counties right across Ulster. A century and a quarter after the foundation of one of the world's most impressive and progressive sports organisations, the series examines how the games still thrive on their ethos of volunteerism.
With contributions from leading GAA commentators, former and current players and managers like Joe Kernan and Mickey Harte, Jarlath explores how, from humble beginnings, the GAA in Ulster survived the turbulent years of Civil War and Partition.
The series also considers how the hope and optimism of the Down footballers' monumental All-Ireland victories in the 1960s was dashed by the onset of the Troubles. Jarlath explores how the Troubles in turn, while challenging the GAA membership, created a hothouse effect that led to a striking resurgence in Ulster football from the 1990s onwards. It seemed that Ulster, in spite of all it had been through, was back.
(Wednesday, September 27th, 9.30pm)
Páirc Uí Chaoimh, the much-awaited regenerated sports stadium has just opened on Leeside, a second coming for a relatively young venue that had not always been loved by those who played there. It was a famous GAA venue but also hosted memorable summer music festivals in days gone by. As the old stadium was demolished and set to be rebuilt, this programme gathers some of the great players, musicians and fans for a trip down memory, while giving an inside view on the rebuilding and the countdown to the grand opening.
Participants include Dónal O'Grady, Seán Ó Sé, Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh, Seán Óg Ó hAilpín, Dr. Con Murphy, Billy Morgan, Dinny Allen, Alan Quirke, Ger Cunnigham, Dara Ó Cinnéide, Seán Bán Breathnach, Nicky English, Michael Moynihan and Michael Foley.