Dual players are a rare breed in today’s game and these three lads are prime examples of why that is so.
Almost every week since July 19, Ciaran McEvoy, Cahir Healy and Frank Flanagan have been playing competitive games in either hurling or football.
McEvoy leads the way in terms of appearance having played in every single game for the hurlers and footballers since July 19 when he was part of the Portlaoise team that lost to Rosenallis in Round 1 of the Senior A.
He has played a total of 15 games in the last 18 weeks – winning 12 of them and losing just three.
With the footballers, McEvoy was on the Portlaoise’s sides who defeated Ballyfin Gaels and Graiguecullen in the early rounds and he was alongside Kieran Lillis at midfield again as they got the better of Ballyroan-Abbey.
St Joseph’s fell to the Town in the semi final and they then claimed their 11th title in the last 12 years defeating O’Dempsey’s in the decider.
McEvoy was excellent as Portlaoise dumped Moorefield out of Leinster in the quarter final but despite his best efforts, Kilmacud Crokes ended their journey last Sunday.
The hurlers lost to Clonaslee and then Rosenallis two weeks later before saving their season by defeating Trumera in the final group game.
This set up a quarter final clash against Shanahoe Gaels where Portlaoise once again prevailed before defeating Clonaslee and then The Harps to win the championship.
The hurlers then entered Leinster where they got the better of Glenealy of Wicklow in the quarter final before defeating Ballinaghmere of Offaly in the semi final to reach Saturday’s final.
McEvoy played in all of those games while Cahir Healy has played 14 games in the last 17 weeks as he missed the first round of the hurling as he recovered from a knee injury.
The 32-year-old’s commitment to both codes is made all the more remarkable considering he commutes home from London, where he is a teacher, every weekend.
Frank Flanagan spent the summer in America and his first game back was the quarter final of the Senior A hurling championship against Shanahoe Gaels.
But since he has returned, he has been extremely busy as he has played either code for the Town for 10 out of the last 11 weeks.
On Saturday, Portlaoise face Graigue-Ballycallan in the Leinster Club Intermediate hurling championship final and you can be sure these three will feature prominently once more.