There’s a report doing the rounds from Australia, with some discussion on it here, about the current whereabouts of Tom Parsons. You’ll recall the Mayo News reported last week that Tom was on his way home after the lovey-dovey international rules series having declared he had no interest in trying his hand at the professional game Down Under. That piece seemed to scotch the rumour, which had been floating around for a while and which the Sunday Tribune had mentioned in passing, that he could soon be heading the way that Pierce Hanley went last year.
It now appears, however, that Tom didn’t board that big metal bird back from Australia last week and instead of pulling up his collar to keep out the cold over in Charlestown, he’s still out in the Antipodes getting a nice tan for himself and, possibly, an AFL contract as well. But then, if this discussion is to be believed, so too are Kerry’s Tommy Walsh and David Moran, as well as a number of other less high-profile players.
I’m not sure how worried we should be by this development. After all, the source used in this story is this so-called “players’ agent” Ricky Nixon who, as is rather grandiosely stated in the report, “has sought to become the conduit by which Irish players are introduced to AFL clubs”. In other words, he’s the guy who is turning a buck from getting Irish lads to sign up with Aussie clubs so obviously it’s in his interest to magnify his efforts in this area. We have only his word for it that Tom has stayed on to look for an AFL contract. Maybe he has stayed on, maybe he hasn’t. Maybe he is looking for a contract, maybe he isn’t. Maybe Tricky Ricky is talking out of his hole. I sure hope so.
In the meantime, if anyone spots Tom Parsons anywhere in the Northern Hemisphere anytime soon, you might confirm the sighting here. Preferably, as the DUP used to say when Big Ian was in charge, with photographic evidence.