The news that Galway fans out there wanted to be confirmed and it offically has been now as Padraic Joyce has signalled his intentions to ‘give it a lash’ for one more year in the pursuit of winning Sam under Joe Kernan for the 1st time in 9 years. The news is a boost for Galway and for Joe Kernan who has made it clear he wanted Joyce back. Padraic has been out with an Achilles problem and underwent surgery but he has now been given the all clear to go back into training. Some, however may argue that the Kilererin man is past his prime and should hang up the boots on his inter-county career, that certainty showed in this years Championship, particularly against Donegal where he looked out of it and not sticking the pace. Joyce revealed that he was carrying a back injury at the time and it hampered his performance.
One might look on the positive side of things which suggest that he is not passed his prime yet, in 2008 he was the best player the team had to offer and that showed with some outstanding performances against Leitrim, Roscommon and of course the ould neighbour Mayo. What ever side you look at it, there is no doubting his past. Joyce came onto the Inter-County scene in 1998, when he scored ‘that’ goal against Kildare in the All Ireland final and gave a man of the match performance that day at such a tender age. He was back again on the Croke Park sod in 2000, where he was Captain of the Galway senior team which went down to Kerry after a replay in the All Ireland Final. 2001 was one of Joyces finest years in the maroon jersey however, when Padraic finished top scorer in the Championship which included 10 points in the All Ireland final win against Meath. Ever since, the Kilereran man has been one of Galway’s most influential and talented players and has demonstrated that, season in-season out.
I for one, would like to see Joyce back for one more year in the county set up as I know there is a bit more in the tank for him to give and afterall he is only 32 years old. People may say get rid of the ‘dead wood’ in Galway football, but without the life & soul of your setup, you wont realised how much they give to the team until they are gone.