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Cathal Noonan/INPHO Paddy Andrews suffered a torrid time at the hands of Colm Cooper in 2009.
# Bouncing Back
From Gooch mauling to shooting star - the fall and rise of Paddy Andrews
The Dublin star had a chastening experience in 2009 but is now one of the most talked about forwards in the game.

IN TERMS OF bouncebackability, the Paddy Andrews journey to Sunday’s All-Ireland senior football final takes some beating.

The potted history is thus – mauled as a defender by Colm Cooper in the 2009 All-Ireland quarter-final, dropped off the panel and looking on from the outside in when the Dubs won Sam in 2011, All-Ireland winner in 2013 and now one of the most feared attackers in the country.

Andrews was on fire against Mayo in the All-Ireland semi-final replay, scoring five points from play, and barring a miracle he will be named to start against Kerry at GAA HQ.

Colm Cooper with Paddy Andrews Donall Farmer / INPHO Paddy Andrews struggled with Colm Cooper in the 2009 All-Ireland quarter-final. Donall Farmer / INPHO / INPHO

One man who has followed the career of Andrews at close quarters is St Brigid’s clubmate and 2011 All-Ireland medallist Barry Cahill.

“I’m delighted for Paddy because I have seen him do it on and off at different stages,” says Cahill.

“And for him to do it in such a big game (Mayo), I was delighted for him.

“He’s had a difficult career with Dublin he hasn’t always been a starter and been in and out of the team.

“He missed out on 2011 but I always feel Dublin are better with him in it.”

Cahill believes that the appointment of Jim Gavin as Dublin boss in 2012 was a seminal moment for Andrews.

“2011 was very tough for him, when he got dropped and we went on to win the All-Ireland.

“We had a really good run that year, we won the Dublin championship and got to the Leinster club final and he was outstanding in that game and that put him back in the shop window again.

Paddy Andrews celebrates at the final whistle Cathal Noonan / INPHO Paddy Andrews was brilliant in the All-Ireland semi-final replay victory over Mayo. Cathal Noonan / INPHO / INPHO

“When Jim Gavin was appointed he was delighted because he would have worked with Jim at U21s and would have felt that Jim was a believer in Paddy as a footballer.

“Going into 2013, it was a case of now or never.

“He had a really good year in 2013 helping Dublin win the All-Ireland.

“With Jim there, he always felt that if he was injury free and playing well that he had a pretty good chance of starting.

Jim Gavin Cathal Noonan / INPHO Jim Gavin has helped to revitalise the career of Paddy Andrews. Cathal Noonan / INPHO / INPHO

“He’s kicked 10 points from play in the last three games, which is serious going,” Cahill adds.

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“So I think maybe (Kerry manager) Eamonn Fitzmaurice wouldn’t have been overly focused on him going into the final but he’ll probably have to do a bit more homework on him.”

Cahill remembers with a smile now the chastening experience that Dublin and Andrews suffered at the hands of Colm ‘Gooch’ Cooper in 2009.

Cooper had the ball in the net after just 40 seconds and finished the game with a haul of 1-7, as Kerry won by 17 points.

“In 2009, he was corner-back and he (Andrews) did a good job in the Leinster final against Kildare,” Cahill recalls. 

Barry Cahill Morgan Treacy / INPHO Barry Cahill with the Sam Maguire Cup in 2011. Morgan Treacy / INPHO / INPHO

“He played well on Alan Smith. But a month later we obviously had the collapse against Kerry. Paddy was on Colm Cooper that day and didn’t have the best of days.

“It’s funny. Paddy actually laughs at that day when people bring it up with him. I think he claims that Colm Cooper scored 1-25 off him that day!

“That was probably the end of his defensive days.”

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