Arabian Celts GAA Club chairperson Alana McConalogue has been selected for the Middle East representative side for the third GAA World Games, taking place in Ireland this summer.
Despite missing the opening round of the league season in Dubai last October through injury, the star forward returned for the club’s home tournament here in Bahrain in November, and produced some key performances on the way to another cup victory.
McConalogue’s achievements on the field can be considered even more impressive on the back of her taking on the reigns of chairperson of the Arabian Celts club last summer, to fill the considerable void of previous incumbent, Pat Kennedy.
As the first female and youngest ever chairperson of the club, the Donegal native oversaw the running of another hugely successful Bahrain Gaelic Games, on the 21st anniversary of the staging of the competition.
The Middle East squad was confirmed on the back of a series of trial matches in Abu Dhabi last month, where fellow Celts Aoibheann McDonnell, Orla Reilly, Amanda Kinsella and Mairead Kennedy all featured prominently and can count themselves unlucky not to be included.
Somewhat fittingly, McConalogue’s selection comes four years after she herself was an unlucky omission from the first ever Middle East representative team to take part in the inaugural World Games in Abu Dhabi.
Proudly following in the footsteps of long-time team-mates Aisling Kinsella (2015) and Reilly (2016), McConalogue will fly the flag for the Arabian Celts club as the only member of the squad outside of senior league heavyweights, Abu Dhabi na Fianna, Dubai Celts and Sharjah Gaels.
The GAA World Games will kick-off at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) in late July and will conclude at the home of Gaelic Games, Croke Park in Dublin, where McConalogue and the Middle East ladies will be looking to recapture the title they won in such memorable fashion in 2015.