Saturday 24 August 2019

Tipp exodus continues as Shane McGrath latest to call time on Premier career

Tipperary's Shane McGrath in action against Galway's Jonathan Glynn during the 2015 All-Ireland hurling semi-final.
Tipperary's Shane McGrath in action against Galway's Jonathan Glynn during the 2015 All-Ireland hurling semi-final.

Declan Wholey

Tipperary midfielder Shane McGrath has followed in the footsteps of Conor O'Mahony and James Woodlock by announcing his inter-county retirement.

The two-time All Star won just one All-Ireland title, in 2010, in a career that spanned more than 10 years and widely regarded as one of the most consistent hurlers in the country.

It is another blow for new Tipp boss Michael Ryan, but the Ballinahinch club man says the time has come to bow out.

“After over 10 years on the Tipperary senior hurling panel, I have decided that now is the right time to announce my retirement from inter-county hurling," he said in a statement.

"It was a great honour and privilege for me to play with Tipperary and I will greatly miss being involved with the special group of people that is the Tipperary senior hurling panel. I have many great memories and made many lifelong friendships over the last decade or so."

"I want to thank all the players sincerely. While we endured some disappointments, we had so many great times together and we have always been united in our ambition and commitment to bring success to Tipperary.

"I also want to thank the managers and backroom teams who helped me to fulfil my potential and were very supportive of me as well as Tipperary County Board and Supporters Club.

The athletic midfielder played in the All-Ireland semi-final defeat to Galway this year, a game that proved to be his final one for the Premier County.

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McGrath also paid tribute to his club, parents and fiancée Joanne.

"During his long career Shane epitomised what it meant to wear the blue and gold of Tipperary by carrying the premier crest in unfailing passion," a statement from the Tipperary County Board read.

"He was the driving force in many of his county's triumphs while his flair and skilfulness endeared him to player and supporter alike. A wonderful leader and never afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve, Shane's loyalty and honesty were some of his greatest assets, qualities well recognised by his fellow players and management teams alike."

His decision follows on from the recent retirements of James Woodlock (29) and Conor O'Mahony (33) with the panel set for a major shake-up ahead of the National League campaign

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