Tuesday 25 October 2016

A rebel yell for Cork's football heroes after 10th All-Ireland triumph

Published 29/09/2015 | 02:30

Cork Captain Ciara O’Sullivan at the homecoming
Cork Captain Ciara O’Sullivan at the homecoming

The record-breaking Cork lady footballers were greeted with a rebel yell as they arrived home triumphant.

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The Rebelettes savoured a rousing reception on Leeside as veteran coach Eamon Ryan (74) hailed their 10th Brendan Martin Cup triumph in 11 years - underlining their depths of courage, skill and tenacity.

Thousands gathered to cheer on their heroes, who are now ranked as the most successful GAA side in Cork history.

Cork beat a brave Dublin side for the second successive time in Sunday's Croke Park decider.

Just two points separated the sides at the final whistle.

Dublin won the only other All-Ireland title not captured by Cork since 2005.

The Rebelettes are now just one title away from equalling the record of Kerry, who top the roll of honour.

Mr Ryan said the Cork side, despite the successes of the past decade, never lost their hunger, commitment or drive.

"The great thing about this side is that they never quit, they never give up and they are tremendously loyal to each other," the coach said.

"To win an All-Ireland takes a huge commitment to training, a lot of personal sacrifice and tremendous commitment to the panel.

"I have said it before and I will say it again - the loyalty in this team is something else.

"Every single one of them is a credit to city and county."

Star player, Rena Buckley, celebrated winning her 10th All-Ireland medal between ladies' football and camogie.

"I'm delighted. It has been some season all right," she said. "It was a really tough game on Sunday and we just about got over the line.

"Both Dublin and ourselves shot a lot of wides but, thank God, we were able to hold on at the end," she added.

Cork's Lord Mayor, Councillor Chris O'Leary, said the achievements of the lady footballers over the past decade have been an enormous source of pride.

"They are a credit to Cork and have been wonderful ambassadors for the city and county," Mr O'Leary said.

"The ladies have flown Cork's Gaelic colours with great skill and commitment and they richly deserve this honour tonight."

A significant number of people in the crowd called for Eamon Ryan to be honoured with the Freedom of Cork for his incredible coaching achievements over the past decade.

Earlier in the day, the squad delighted the children at Temple Street Hospital in Dublin by bringing in the cup to show the patients.

Irish Independent

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