Failing Better

I have more reason than most to dislike the Mayo football team. We shipped many bad beatings at their hands. My last ever game for Sligo was in Castlebar in 2008 – we were beaten by 13 points and I was substituted at half time, Ronan McGarrity having done a number on me. However their more recent exploits (and perhaps the fact that it’s no longer me out there being beaten by them!) have given me no choice but to admire them. Their rollercoaster journey to the All-Ireland final last year lit up the summer, and I eagerly devoured any media coverage surrounding it. Indeed I heard a great phrase in the aftermath of that epic final. One of my favourite sports journalists – Kieran Shannon (a man who had previously worked with the Mayo team in his capacity as a sports psychologist) – used it in his wonderful article about the match. He spoke about ‘failing better’, and how

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