Donal McAnallen shares poignant anecdotes and insights from his brother Cormac's life

He joined Dave on the show to share memories of his late brother

BY Raf Diallo 20:40 Thursday 7 September 2017, 20:40 7 Sep 2017

"First and foremost and probably the most important man... this man should be here instead of me receiving this cup today. The name is Cormac McAnallen."   

Those are parts of the words of former Tyrone captain Brian Dooher during his acceptance speech after the county won the 2005 All Ireland Football final.

That day came 18 months after the tragic passing of former Tyrone captain Cormac McAnallen at the age of 24, who had been part of the 2003 All Ireland winning team.

The tributes that have been paid to McAnallen since 2004, including the naming of the International Rules Series trophy in his honour, evoke how well regarded he was and the impact he had on people far and wide. 

His brother Donal McAnallen has shared anecdotes and insights about Cormac in a book titled The Pursuit of Perfection: The Life, Death and Legacy of Cormac McAnallen and tonight he joined Dave on the show to share his memories.

Dave McIntyre, Kevin Kilbane and Will O'Callaghan remembered Cormac McAnallen on the Newsround:

The words "pursuit to perfection" in the title evoke the aspects of Cormac McAnallen's mindset in regards to extracting the absolute maximum from himself on and off the Gaelic football pitch, which he had shared in his diary and in charts which assessed his performances.

"He was so earnest and he really did want the best for everyone and sometimes you wonder did he try to do too much for everybody. Were we considerate enough of him?" said Donal of those aspects of the book, while also touching on some of the pressures that came with being an elite inter-county footballer.

You can listen to the full interview with Donal McAnallen right here.

"When you look back on it now and you see all the worries that he had that year, I can't help but wonder how these things play off each other, what sense do we make of them now, can you over-analyse it, did it have some part in his ultimate demise? It's not that we have no answers. We have a medical explanation," he said.  

Donal also read a poem that Cormac had written which poignantly looked to the future:

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