Gaelic football player of the year Michael Darragh Macauley will launch a brand new GAA club on the Gold Coast this evening.
The Dublin player of the year, who was crucial to the Dubs successful All Ireland campaign in 2013, will be on hand at the official launch tonight at Southport Sharks club.
His brother Joe, who is getting married on Saturday, is the president of the new Gold Coast Gaels club.
“Michael Darragh is my best man so we thought we’d take advantage of the fact he was around to help us get the club off the ground,” Joe told the Irish Echo.
Having the code’s number one player on hand has its advantages. The all-star brought a Dublin jersey signed by the All Ireland winning team to auction off at the club launch.
“He’s also given us a signed pair of boots,” his brother revealed.
The emergence of the Gaels reflects the sharp increase in the number of expats settling on the Coast.
Secretary Joe, who works as an emergency doctor with Careflight in south-east Queensland, said while the sporting aspect is important, it is the social element which has provided the main motivation.
“There are quite a few Irish here but they’re in pockets,” Joe told the Irish Echo.
“We thought a GAA club would be a good way to bring the community together.”
The fledgling Gaels will compete in the Queensland GAA competition, which is based in Willawong in the suburbs of Brisbane.
“We’re also hoping that clubs will travel down from Brisbane to play us here,” Joe said.
Joe has been supported in setting up the club by fellow Dub Brian Keane and Kerryman Dan O’Halloran, who is also the club’s main sponsor through his company Celtic Power and Civil.
For more details about the Gold Coast Gaels, visit their Facebook page.