The July 2019 winner of the very successful Cork City & County Youth Awards is Cathail O’Mahony from Mitchelstown, who recently won the U20 All Ireland football final.
Cathail started playing GAA at five years of age with Mitchelstown and Ballygiblin, although he says that he was definitely playing in the garden with his brother and dad before that.
Cathail attended a very good sporting primary school, Mitchelstown CBS, winning two football and hurling North Cork titles, both at the highest grade and also making the primary games football team.
Cathail also had a successful secondary school sporting career, winning three premier two counties with Mitchelstown plus three Munsters and an All-Ireland with the school.
This year, 2019, was definitely Cathail’s most dominant sporting year picking up a Munster and All Ireland medal with Cork football, along with Player of the Province for Munster and a Man of the Match in the All-Ireland final.
Cathail says that his biggest influences would have to be his family and Mr William Duggan who was in charge of his school’s team for six years and who made schools GAA ‘a joy to play’.
He also credits his Mitchelstown and Ballygiblin clubs stating that they have always been behind him and very supportive.
This year, Cathail says that he has definitely gained a lot of respect for the whole of the Cork U20’s management team.
With the mental lessons taught by Keith Ricken and technical skills introduced by Colm O’Neill, he knows that he has definitely improved his game.