Roger Harty: Kerry Football – Look To Nature (The Chameleon Effect)

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rsz_roger_hartyOK the big day has arrived – it’s All Ireland final day and Kerry are involved.

If Carlsberg did heaven in Kerry then this is it! All the talk at the moment is who is going to win, that is the burning question.

Obviously my heart is with Kerry, but what I truly believe that adaptation is the key to a Kingdom victory.

Kerry have a very astute manager in Eamonn Fitzmaurice. He was present (habeas corpus) at both of the Dublin matches against Mayo.

The reason for this is obvious yet simple, he realises at a very deep level that the style of game that Kerry played against Tyrone will in no way suffice against Dublin.

He as manager wanted to witness this at first hand to create the awareness that is required and then to adapt accordingly in training over the last four weeks.

This is what people mean when they say ‘he had his homework done’, but as every child will tell you, knowing what homework you have and doing it are two completely different things. To summarise there are three main aspects to this jigsaw.

Awareness (realisation of danger), Adaptation (ability to change) and Application (actually putting it into practice.

This is in simple terms AAA and I know you may be slightly confused and think that I am talking about batteries but to keep in that vein perhaps that is the Duracell that I believe will get Kerry over the line.

There is no doubt we have the players with the ability, and to be honest there are excellent players on both sides but I believe a huge part of this game is going to won or lost on the sidelines as the margins are so small.

Not just in the area of preparation but also in  concentration at what is happing live in the game so that Kerry have a gameplan as the game evolves. E.G. What do Kerry do if Cluxton kicks the ball short or can  we cover that and make sure he is forced into kicking a long ball and if that is the case have we cover elsewhere?

This is live strategic management with great attention to detail and I have great faith in Eamonn and his management that they have prepared and absorbed all of this sort of information over the last four weeks.

Dublin have had only two weeks to do the same so hopefully that will be the game- changer.

Life (including the business world), sport and nature have so much in common. Take the AAA battery example I gave above.

The chameleon is a small lizard style animal that can be found in both the jungle and in the desert.

The key for the survival of the chameleon is its ability to adapt to the environment short- term or long-term to whatever threat that presents itself.

In the jungle it can change its colour to brown or green to blend in with the bark or leaves of tree in order to ward off attack.

In the desert it can change colour to grey or pale yellow whether it feels danger in an environment that is either stony or sandy.

Firstly it has to have Awareness (realisation), then Adaptation (ability to change quickly) and this is no good without Application (putting this into practice). Yes you guessed it right we’re back to AAA!!!

This is all about survival in a hostile environment and even the greatest armies in the world have taken a leaf out of this little creature’s book when they use camouflage for the sole purpose of ensuring survival in difficult situations with the aim of ultimate victory.

Come on Kerry.

• Next week I am going to write about…The importance of Passion.

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