Home GAA Football Cavan v Kerry – 1947 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

Cavan v Kerry – 1947 GAA All-Ireland Football Final

The GAA Collection
Directed by:
The National Film Institute
Produced by:
The National Film Institute


8 mins

In 1947, as a commemoration of the centenary of the Great Famine and to revitalise Gaelic games in America, the All-Ireland Football Final was held in New York. The game was played in the Polo Grounds, home of the New York Giants baseball team. The scorching conditions were difficult for players and the unusually shaped pitch was bone dry. Kerry started much better and built up an eight-point lead. However, the switch of Cavan’s P.J. Duke from midfield to his more customary wing half back position would transform the game in Cavan’s favour. Among the leading Kerry scorers were Batt Garvey and Tom Gega O’Connor, while they also had a formidable defence including goalkeeper Dan O’Keefe and full-back Joe Keohane. Cavan’s Peter Donohue scored eight points and was described as the ‘Babe Ruth of Gaelic football’ by the New York press. Other Cavan heroes were legendary captain John Joe O’Reilly, Mick Higgins and Tony Tighe.

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