Almost 200 Irish towns and villages have attempted to claim to be UFC champion Conor McGregor’s birthplace. Of those, 192 have considered legal action, with two (Enniscorthy, County Wexford and Tullamore, we’re not sure what county that’s in, but we think it’s one of the ones in the middle) even going to the High Court, in an effort to convince several ‘really important judges’ of their supposed rights to the recently-crowned champion.
Mr. McGregor (26) defeated Chad Mendes last weekend in Las Vegas, Nevada, to clinch the interim Featherweight belt (current champion Jose Aldo pulled out of a fight with McGregor due to a rib injury), and in the chaotic days since, towns all over Ireland have been proudly claiming his citizenship.
Harry Dwyer, the curator at the ‘Conor McGregor Museum and Gift Shop’ in Bundoran, County Donegal (and former proprietor of County Cavan’s Ronan Keating superstore), had this to say: ‘Sure we’ve been with Conor since the start, last Tuesday morn, I think it were. We’ve as much rights to him as anyone, and if you listen closely to the way he does say some things, you can almost hear a Donegal accent, so you can, to be sure there now aye. But that might have been some lad standing behind him when he was talking’. Mr. Dwyer’s wife, Bernie, agreed, saying; ‘Aye’.
Despite speaking with a pronounced west Dublin brogue, Mr. McGregor has had towns across the breadth of the country attempt to claim him as ‘one of their own’. We spoke with Fine Gael’s Deputy Minister for Sport and Stuff, Mrs. Mary Doolin, who said that it was unfair that Dublin gets all the good ones. ‘The Dubs have had their time, they’ve had the likes of Sinead O’Connor, Frank Sinatra, Nelson Mandela and Ryan Tubridy born there, ’tis about time the rest of us get an oul’ star or something. Sure where I’m from, Offaly, all we have is Kevin Spacey and some lad who used to play hurling for Westmeath’.
Currently, the main contenders for Mr. McGregor’s birthplace, are; Crumlin, where he’s reported to have grown up, Lucan, where his family is said to live, Glendalough which he visited on a school tour, Portlaoise, which he once took a picture of from a plane and Tubbercurry, County Sligo, which kind of sounds like ‘Tub of Curry’, and we just included for the craic.
If somewhere outside Dublin is officially recognized as being Mr. McGregor’s birthplace, it will be the first town outside the capital to claim a world champion since 1927, when Herbie O’Rourke, two-time world juggling champion, resided in Navan, County Meath, for several weeks, while his mansion in Clondalkin was being renovated.
Words by Bosco Coppell. Picture by Beatrice’s Antique Trinkets and Rifles.