Wicked Game (The Art of making a hurley stick )


The quickest field game in the world.I spent a weekend in Kilkenny recently and on Sunday morning was wandering around Kilkenny Castle grounds. There was a small marque set up and a hurley (camán in Irish) maker inside showing how a hurley is made. Tom O’ Donoghue was his name, a very friendly guy who showed us the process of making a hurley- from the block of wood, the tools used to cut and finish it off. A very interesting process.

Hurling is an outdoor team game of ancient Gaelic origin, administered by the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA). Hurling has prehistoric origins, has been played for at least 3,000 years and is thought to be the world’s fastest field team game in terms of game play.
Hurleys are made from ash wood, the base of the tree near the root is the only part used.

Post title taken from a song “Wicked Games” by Chris Isaac, which featured in David Lynch’s dark film Wild At Heart

1 Comment

  1. silver account
    September 7, 2012 at 11:30 — Reply

    Hurleys are made from ash wood, the base of the tree near the root is the only part used and are usually bought from local craftsmen in Ireland (for about 20-50 euro), who still use traditional production methods. However, for some time in the 1970s, hurleys made from plastic were used, mainly produced by Wavin . These proved more likely to cause injury, however, and were phased out. Steel bands are used to reinforce the flattened end of the hurley though these are not permitted in camogie due to increased risk of injury. Bands have been put on hurleys since the beginning; the 8th century Brehon Laws permit only a king’s son to have a bronze band, while all others must use a copper band.

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