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Thursday, 18 October, 2001, 16:48 GMT 17:48 UK
Galwey back for more
Mick Galwey
Mick Galwey was recalled after Irish defeat in Edinburgh
BBC Sport Online's Jim Stokes in Dublin

Gaillimh and Claw. Sounds like an old Vaudeville act.

Well, an act it definitely is not.

When Mick Galwey and Peter Clohessy strut around Ireland's team hotel, you know they mean business.

They are the wise old heads in an Ireland side attempting to stop England collecting a delayed Six Nations Grand Slam at Lansdowne Road on Saturday.

Gaillimh (pronounced 'Gauloff', and Irish for the county of Galway) and Clohessy are now in their mid-30s and have been there and done that.

But they want a little bit more.

When Clive Woodward talks about the physical nature of the Irish, he means Munster's veteran duo.

For lock forward Galwey, facing England immediately brings back memories of his only international try.

It was against England at Lansdowne Road.

Favourites

Galwey, who has been handed his P45 more times than any other international player, returns to the oldest international rugby stadium in the world hoping to repeat that act.

''That memory back in 1993 stands out more than any,'' he said.


I will go and do my level best and I will not let the pressure get at me - I am too old in the tooth for that
Mick Galwey
"Again, England were big favourites to take our scalp, but we took them to the cleaners and won 17-3.

''My try was near the end. I received the ball wide out and went over for the corner with a couple of England players hanging on to my shirt tails."

Galway, 35 at the start of the month, is a year younger than his prop forward Clohessy.

The two have been joined shoulder to buttock for over a decade now and are judge, jury and executioner amongst the Irish squad build-ups.

Although professional rugby is now a serious business, their humour is renowned.

Take Clohessy's new drinking emporium in Limerick - 'The Sin Bin''.

Clohessy was scratching his head wondering what to name the pub, until Galwey's wife Joan come upon the obvious - Limerick ladies know their rugby.

Reinstated

Since packing down with Brian Rigney against France in February 1991, Mick Galwey's career has seen him trip up and fall, then get up again.

The former Kerry GAA star has been pronounced internationally dead no fewer than 10 times, but 10 times he has won his place back.

At the start of the season, the Irish selectors believed he was not the man he was and not one for the future.

Peter Clohessy
Peter Clohessy is oldest man in Ireland team
How wrong they were, as they reinstated him after the Murrayfield debacle and he subsequently proved a point at the Millennium Stadium.

"Some people will say it is easy for me to come back into the squad in these circumstances; others say it will be harder," he said.

"But for me to come back in and change things drastically is a big task.

''I will go and do my level best and I will not let the pressure get at me - I am too old in the tooth for that.

''The good thing about being dropped and picked again is that you have been around the block and you know when things are wrong or right.

''Experience is a great thing and I have got plenty of that in my locker.

Hard games

"Everybody feels the pressure but I suppose it is a question of how you react when it hits you.

''Maybe I can spot problems quicker than someone else, but whether I am better under pressure than the next player, who knows?

''I suppose we will see on Saturday.


Playing against the old enemy, particularly when they are going for glory, will give us impetus
Mick Galwey

"Physically I am fine, but I do not hide the fact that all of us have had a lot of hard games.

''The Celtic League has been good for Irish rugby and for all the provinces, and then the Heineken Cup started.

''It is only October and already we have had lot of hard rugby.

''Nobody, even the young lads, is coming in after a match saying it was a doddle.

''We will just have to get on with it.

''However, playing England will give us a big spring in our steps.

''Playing against the old enemy, particularly when they are going for glory, will give us impetus.

''They are a good team, though. I would say they are one of the top teams in the world on their day.

''I just hope it is not Saturday.''

Links to more Ireland stories are at the foot of the page.


Links to more Ireland stories

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