In 2002, 11-year-old Zak Moradi moved to Carrick-on-Shannon after his family fled Saddam Hussein's dictatorship in Iraq.
Zak would become an All-Ireland hurling champion with Leitrim 17 years later when helping the county to an historic Nicky Rackard Cup success at Croke Park.
And last night, on the Tommy Tiernan Show, Zak joined Tommy in the RTÉ studio to discuss his incredible journey, from growing up in a refugee camp in Ramadi to being part of the GAA family.
You can watch Zak's full interview on the RTÉ Player from 21.15, here.
Zak Moradi some man. Kurdistan to Tallaght via Leitrim. None of them considered a traditional hurling stronghold, but Zak is hurling mad and currently driving the game in Tallaght. #TommyTiernan— Timmy Hammersley (@TimmyHammersley) January 23, 2021
Zak Moradi and his family, like many others who have made Leitrim their home, have made our communities and county a wonderfully cultured, diverse & welcoming place to live. We are lucky to have them. Isn’t this the way it should be? End direct provision! #TommyTiernanShow— Edwina Guckian (@EdwinaGuckian) January 23, 2021
Two top, top lads on RTE One right now - Zak Moradi and Tommy Tiernan! Like two lads chatting over a pint at the bar!— Micky Quigg (@micky_quigg) January 23, 2021
What a story by the Leitrim Hurler #TommyTiernanShow
Zak Moradi , unbelievably positive attitude to life!! #TommyTiernan— Kieran Finn (@KieranFinn13) January 23, 2021
Zak Moradi is absolutely fantastic. Leitrim are lucky to have him What a legend & a gent he is #TommyTiernanShow— @Aoifs123 (@Aoifs123) January 23, 2021
What a wonderfully positive fella. Great interview there with Zak Moradi #TommyTiernanShow— Donna Martin (@DonnaMartin03) January 23, 2021
Zak Moradi, the Leitrim senior hurler, born in Iraq has been absolutely brilliant on the Tommy Tiernan show tonight.👏👏— Odhran Crumley (@odhranc14) January 23, 2021
His story sums up the GAA and it’s mantra - where we all belong... pic.twitter.com/i0rPE5AylV
Zak Moradi is so engaging and great to hear his story. Lovely interview. #TommyTiernan— Alan Kinsella (@electionlit) January 23, 2021
Zak Moradi is some man. His enthusiasm for hurling is brilliant #TommyTiernan— NHS (@The_HSA) January 23, 2021
Remarkable story on Tommy Tiernan with Zak Moradi. Irish people will be enthralled by his story...hopefully they realise if they holiday in Turkey, buy Turkish goods they are supporting a regime which denies rights and a homeland to the Kurdish people creating stories like Zak..— Ronan Sheehan (@newryhurler1) January 23, 2021
A really great interview there on the #TommyTiernanShow with Zak Moradi. What an incredible story, Zak is a wonderful character.— Paudie O'Neill (@oneillpaudie) January 23, 2021
Also, very proud of how he describes his experience with hurling, that's what the #GAAFamily all about. Fair play Zak and Tommy 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻
Absolutely mighty interview with @ZakmoradiGAA You could listen to him for hours. He seems like a top class fella. I love the way he talks so passionately about the @officialgaa #TommyTiernanshow pic.twitter.com/41K1DFaeIx— Brian Carroll (@bcarroll17) January 23, 2021