Pic: An incredible ten-foot high replica of the Sam Maguire built in stone in Donegal 7 years ago

Pic: An incredible ten-foot high replica of the Sam Maguire built in stone in Donegal

Good luck to anyone trying to lift that…

Whenever a county manages to get their hands on the prestigious Sam Maguire trophy they want to hold onto as long as possible and although Donegal had to surrender Sam to the Dubs last September, a farmer in the county has ensured that it will never leave the hills.

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Last night, the official GAA Twitter account posted a picture of a remarkable ten-foot high replica of the Sam Maguire trophy made entirely of stone by Anthony Barrett, a farmer living in Newtoncunningham who originally hails from Omagh in Tyrone.

 

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Pic via Margaret McLaughlin

The replica, which is 12 feet wide and ten feet high, took Barrett three months to complete and speaking about his magnificent creation to the BBC, Barrett said: “It's my wee treat, because of my love of football and the fact my daughter plays with the Tyrone minor ladies.

"It took a bit of time. I could only build an inch or so each day. If I had put on more stone at the same time I was afraid of it collapsing," he added.

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The most surprising thing about Barret’s creation is that he is not a qualified stone mason, yet according to a piece on the GAA website, he has used stone to create other masterpieces on his land such as a large castle and two round towers.

We can only add to the praise that Barrett is no doubt receiving in large supply since his masterpiece was completed but at the same time warn him that he may soon be inundated with requests to erect similar replicas in other counties where Sam hasn’t been seen for quite some time.

Your humble author may or not be talking about his own county, which lies west of the Shannon and where success hasn't been tasted in over 60 years despite coming painfully (oh so painfully) close to doing so on numerous occasions in recent years...