Wicklow GAA star the victim of vicious Twitter hacking
Anyone that saw the tweet supposedly sent by Wicklow midfielder James Stafford yesterday would have figured something was amiss, and they would have been right.
An account purporting to be belonging to Wicklow midfielder James Stafford (@RealStafford) sent a tweet to well-known former Laois footballer turned GAA analyst Colm Parkinson for critical remarks he made about Stafford during an appearance on The Sunday Game on Sunday night.
Although Parkinson has riled a few people in the past, it seemed a bit extreme for a current inter-county player to send such an offensive tweet on a public forum, but it soon attracted notoriety after it was widely retweeted yesterday afternoon.
Although it seemed fairly obvious that it wasn’t Stafford who was behind the tweet, he has moved to publicly disassociate himself from the account and has admitted that he may call the guards to put a stop to it as it’s not the first time the account has caused him distress.
“The County Board put a tweet on it a couple of weeks ago saying it wasn’t me and I was going to get the guards involved in it," Stafford told the Irish Daily Star.
“I haven’t gone yet but I should go. I couldn’t care what they’re saying but if I’m out with the girlfriend and someone comes up to me and hits me a smack and I say what’s that for?
“There has been a bit of hassle down here. Someone has the ‘Real Stafford’ down here. I have a Twitter page, but it’s not me. I’m not one of them lads that would try to look to bring trouble on myself.”
A closer look at the fake account provides further proof that it is certainly a parody, with tweets sent out to a Tallafornia cast member asking him to play junior football for Wicklow and a tweet posted to the official Wicklow GAA page suggesting that if everyone trained as hard as Stafford that Wicklow would be winning All-Irelands every year.
Stafford isn’t the first GAA figure to suffer at the hands of a Twitter impostor and he probably won’t be the last. Indeed, Westmeath boss Pat Flanagan had to go public after a fake account in his name caused all sorts of trouble earlier this year.
Both accounts weren't particularly funny and caused more trouble than anything else. In that respect, they fall a long way short of the king of all fake GAA Twitter accounts, @Marty_Morrissey, which is so good even Marty himself has given it the thumbs up.