GAA Football

Paul Brady targets US National Handball titles record

Handballing stars Aisling Reilly (Antrim) and Paul Brady (Cavan) 
Tony McGee

Paul Brady has a host of records tucked away but there is still one that he desperately seeks.

He wants to, at least, match Naty Alvarado's record of 11 US Men's National titles. The chance comes again for the Cavan man to put that notch on his belt.

Even at the age of 37, Brady's enthusiasm for success is as great as ever.

He has headed back over to the States to prepare for the Nationals, which are being held in Orange County.

A year ago, he was on the verge of winning that elusive honour but Cork man Killian Carroll, surprisingly, defeated his Irish colleague in the final, at Minnesota.

It was close as Carroll pulled off the win 11-10 in a tie-breaker. Brady seemed to be on his way when he won the first match at six but Carroll hit back to win the second at 17 to force the shootout.

“I was lucky to reach the final as I also had to go to a tie-breaker against Luis Moreno but I got through that, anyhow,” recalled World record holding champion Brady.

“Yes, I imagine that the draw for this week's Nationals will give Killian and I a chance of meeting in the final again. Being the holder, he will, obviously be seeded at Number One.”

The pair have clashed since that 2016 June decider when Carroll prevented Brady of winning his 11th US Four-Wall Nationals title.

In a ProStop event in New York in March this year they both reached the final with Brady winning 15-12, 15-5, pretty clearcut. That showed the determination of the Breffni battler to get even.

However, it's the Nationals crown he has his sights trained on now as he chases Alvarado's record of 11 wins.

“I was determinated to go back and try again,” said Brady.

“I am stress free with no injury worries and that leaves me in a good way. I finished my Masters Degree in Sport & Exercise Physiology last December, at UUJ, and I have been teaching in a school in Cavan, as well as, playing handball. This time I am conscious of being right for the task ahead. I have enjoyed the training and I'm looking forward to the challenge.

“Probably for the first time in about 16 years I have not niggling injury problems. I have got the problems with both my knees sorted out and I have been doing various exercises to help with my preparations, so I'm ready.

“I haven't been playing football, so far, this season as I'm concentrating on trying to win that record-equalling 11th US Nationals' title.”

Despite that, Brady has other things on his mind at present. He is getting married next September and is, of course, involved in preparations for that major occasion, as well.


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