Kerry footballers Gavin White and Cáit Lynch were at West Kerry’s Inch beach to announce details of the Lidl Comórtas Peile Páidí Ó Sé 2023, the famed club ladies and men’s Gaelic football tournament, taking place all across the Dingle Peninsula from February 24-26.
Kerry footballers Gavin White and Cáit Lynch were at West Kerry’s Inch beach to announce details of the Lidl Comórtas Peile Páidí Ó Sé 2023, the famed club ladies and men’s Gaelic football tournament, taking place all across the Dingle Peninsula from February 24-26.

Gavin White preparing for 2023 challenge


By Cian O'Connell

Gavin White is hoping to feature at some stage during the Allianz Football League for Kerry.

The Dr Crokes clubman hasn't played since the 2022 All-Ireland SFC Final due to a knee injury, but has recently resumed light training.

"I got the operation three weeks after the final and I was on crutches for six weeks so I couldn’t walk or anything and I’ve only done a small bit of running there in the last week for the first time since," White says.

"So look it has been five months out and I don’t have a timeline as such, just taking it week by week.

"From my own point of view I’d be hoping to get some sort of a league, but if that doesn’t happen I’m happy with that too, it’s just the way sport goes I suppose."

Following some harrowing Championship losses in recent years Kerry finally closed the deal in 2022.

Is it difficult to deal with expectation as a Kerry footballer? "It's a great thing," White replies. "We've seen both sides of the coin now - winning All-Irelands and coming up short.

"There's obviously pressure on you and that's the way it always has been in Kerry. It's just about dealing with that.

"If you can't deal with it, it's probably not for you. You become accustomed to it fairly quickly when you come in. When I first came in, I had the likes of Marc Ó Sé and David Moran and within two or three weeks you knew exactly what was involved and what was expected.

"I suppose you just get used to it. There's no real quick answer to that."

The contribution made by Moran, who retired earlier this week, to the Kerry cause is fondly remembered by White.

Kerry's Gavin White in action during the 2022 All-Ireland SFC Final against Galway.
Kerry's Gavin White in action during the 2022 All-Ireland SFC Final against Galway.

"I can't say anything but good things about the man," White says. "A real leader on and off the pitch. From a team point of view, he was absolutely extraordinary in everything he did.

"From the public, he's obviously known for lording kickouts and so on and so forth, but inside in the dressing room, he was just so much more.

"A real leader, really wanted to get Kerry over the line. I'm really, really glad I got an opportunity to play with him and obviously win the All-Ireland with him last year."

Moran assisted White when he joined the Kerry set-up. "From my own personal point of view, he was kind of a father figure to me," White adds.

"When I first came in with Kerry, he was one of the first players that would have come up to me and welcomed me into the squad.

"He really took me under his wing, which I'm forever grateful for. I'm sad to see him go, but at the same time, I'm delighted I got to play minutes with him. A great leader on and off the pitch, I could sit here all day talking him up, a real gent."

Now that an All-Ireland title has been gleaned will there by a change in mindset ahead of the 2023 campaign?

“I suppose any successful teams down through the years, you have to ground yourself again when you come back into National League," White responds.

"I don’t think any county that has won back-to-back All-Irelands play the exact same way the following year, something has to change.

"It’s just the way the game has gone. There’s so much analysing done now and stuff like that, that you just have to change something so we’re going to do that as well.

"Obviously we’d be looking to do back-to-back and win as many games as we can but look, it’s a challenge, that’s why we’re in the game, we’re in the game to challenge ourselves each day and play against the best all over the country so look, we’re looking forward to it."