GAA Abroad – The Sarah Forde Does Sharjah Gaels Story

Here’s a little piece we had planned to do a long while back that highlights the great importance of the GAA across the world with so many of our Fam and Besties spread across the globe these days, the importance of having an outlet for them to be able to break a hurl across another persons shins cannot be understated. It simply is a staple need of any true GAA man or woman when they are living far from home! GAA clubs across the globe provide not only an outlet for the globetrotting hatchet men and women to draw more blood from their victims than a vampire working as a taxman, they also provide a welcome landing spot for all us Pasty Skinned Sesh Zombies who have the same magnetic pull towards Beer & GAA Matches as Horseflies do to a Fresh Cowshite!

Whether you’re from Cavan and decided you’ve shifted your cousin way too many times at this stage or you’re from anywhere North of Cootehill and nobody has a feckin breeze what language you’re shiteing on in at all and you decide “Shag it I’m breaking open the Communion Money and heading abroad”, you can be sure that just like your mammy, the local GAA club wherever you land will take you in with open arms even though deep down they know you’re a bit unstable and smell a bit like a festering Wexican who spent too much time molesting strawberries.

You see the GAA clubs of the world are the unsung heroes of our Irish Lunatics and deserve huge credit as they not only provide outlets for the maniacs, alcoholics, jersey pullers and the midlands people who hunt alligators around Tullamore but also one of our very own in Miss Sarah Forde who ticks none of the other boxes but she is a handy Camogie player and knows her way around a Glass of Gin! A few years back Sarah found her way to Dubai and like all good Wicklow GAA folk her insatiable thirst for an opponents blood took her in search of a GAA club and that path led her to the Sharjah Gaels and leads you who are reading this to the more serious bit! Here’s a bit about the Sharjah Gaels who are a club that if you were to find yourself moving to Dubai, you should most definitely join up with without fear of them judging you for being from Cavan and shifting your cousin! 

Founded in 2012, Sharjah Gaels has become well-established GAA club in the Emirate of Sharjah just outside Dubai in the United Arab of Emirates. We are a club made up of over 160 expats living and working in the Northern Emirates. Known throughout the Middle East for successfully hosting our home tournaments as well as the top quality players we have recruited Sharjah Gaels has gone from strength to strength over the last seven years and are now a dominant force in the Middle East League, which is composed of fifteen clubs, with over 1300 members, spread across six Middle Eastern countries.

As it stands, Sharjah Gaels proudly boast both men’s and ladies football teams, along with hurling and camogie teams. Throughout the season, Gaels travel across the U.A.E. competing in tournaments along with travelling further afield throughout the year, competing in tournaments in locations such as Bahrain and Oman. Currently, the club has over 160 members, representing counties and clubs all over Ireland as well as players from around the world who wanted to try something new. It is known for many of our members as a ‘home away from home’, and is renowned for its community-like presence in the heart of the UAE! The Sharjah Gaels are lucky enough to be affiliated with the Sharjah Wanderers Sport Club, a fantastic club house with a perfect selection of recreation and leisure opportunities.  The club has been a pivotal element in the success of the GAA club.

Tickets for the Club Dinner Dance are more sought after than a sniff of a pair of Marty Morrissey’s underpants and in the photo below you can see why👌

For the 2018/19 season among the four playing codes, the Sharjah Gaels entered an impressive 16 teams into the Middle East Gaelic league. 7 ladies football teams, 4 men football teams, 3 hurling teams and 2 camogie teams. Players dedicate themselves to at least two training sessions a week with some members travelling over an hour to make it to training. The club is running on a volunteer basis by players who dedicate themselves to train, manage and organize the club in both sporting and social events.

The ground hurling on a Wet Wednesday night in the shlop is not a problem here

Since camogie was introduced in the club in 2015, the camogs have won the Middle East League in 2017/18 and a large number of tournaments in-between. Most recently, in January our intermediate camogie team brought home their first piece of silverware this season winning the Al Ain Intermediate camogie cup.

Post Match cool downs are very important and it’s important to stay hydrated😉 Team Physio Job Interviews Are Like Scenes From The Hunger Games!

In October during our home tournament, the Sharjah Gaels Senior Men’s Hurling team, created history and secured the clubs first hurling senior title, the lads went on to win the 2018/19 league after winning the Abu Dhabi tournament in November. Huge efforts and many years of work lead to this win! This is a brilliant achievement for the club, the ladies will hopefully follow in the men’s footsteps and win this seasons championship in March.

In October 2018, we were grateful for the Irish camogie association who sent out a representative to referee the Sharjah tournament and provide a course for ladies who were interested in becoming qualified referees. We also welcomed Hurler of the year Cian Lynch to our annual Hurling and Camogie tournament in October, he refereed the intermediate games and presented winners with their trophies. Cian was presented with the unique Sharjah Gaels jersey which he went on to wear on the Sunday game.

In the near future we hope to invite more iconic GAA stars out to our home tournaments. Buff Egan has shown us great support this season sharing our pictures with his social media followers. We hope to get him out to Sharjah to commentate our thrilling games!

They also have their own Club Tune- This is a Choo Choo Choooooon

If your ever in the area or know of anyone traveling to the Middle East, get in contact if you’d like a kick or puck about or are just as mad as a box of frogs.

Follow our social media sites to be kept updated with our club.

Facebook: Sharjah Gaels

Instagram: Sharjah_gaels

Twitter: @sharjahgaels 

You Can Also Follow Our Bill Hill Wicklow Social Media Sites Without Being Arrested for Following Someone Again!


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