Thursday 29 September 2016

Clan Hall of Fame for legend Swift

Daragh Small

Published 15/04/2016 | 02:30

Connacht legend Michael Swift cannot believe where Connacht have got to under Pat Lam and says it's a credit to all involved. Photo: Sportsfile
Connacht legend Michael Swift cannot believe where Connacht have got to under Pat Lam and says it's a credit to all involved. Photo: Sportsfile

Connacht legend Michael Swift cannot believe where Connacht have got to under Pat Lam and says it's a credit to all involved.

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The 38-year-old will be inducted into the Connacht Clan Hall of the Fame after Saturday's crucial inter-provincial derby against Munster at the Sportsground. There he will join Keith Matthews, Ray Ofisa, Eric Elwood, Johnny O'Connor, Gavin Duffy, Ciaran Fitzgerald and Andrew Farley in the Hall of Fame.

London native Swift played his final game for Connacht in their 24-20 defeat at home to Ospreys in the closing round in the Pro12 last season.

Between the Pro12 and Europe, Swift made 262 appearances in 15 seasons with the province after he began his career as a 19-year-old with Richmond, and then moved on to Leeds Tykes for a year.

Former Galwegians coach John Kingston enticed Swift to Galway in 2000 and from there he grew his legacy as one of the most iconic figures of Connacht.

"Before I came to Galway I didn't know too much about the place. A quick Google of Galway and it came up as a small vibrant town. Not too good with the weather, but I thought I would give it a chance," he said.

"The first day I turned up for pre-season training, I think ten guys turned up, in a small room. I saw the pitch, with greyhounds running around it. A small wooden stand, Eric Elwood going mad because only ten turned up for training.

"To compare it from then to where they are now, it's fantastic. I am delighted for the guys, and for Pat Lam. The stuff they are doing there is sensational."

Irish Independent

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