Sport Hurling

Thursday 14 December 2017

Three who quit and returned before retiring for good

DJ Carey

(Kilkenny) 1998

For six weeks in 1998 DJ Carey, then 27, was officially retired. After months of deliberation, he dropped the bombshell to the Kilkenny County Board and the then manager Kevin Fennelly, who had just taken over from Nickey Brennan, that he was walking away.

Every semblance of rumour circulated about why he wanted out, but years later he would point to malicious gossip as one of the main reasons for his departure.

He returned after six weeks and played in six of the next seven All-Ireland finals, winning three. He even enjoyed a second brief retirement in 2002 prior to being parachuted in for the 2002 All-Ireland semi-final against Tipperary.

Brian Corcoran

(Cork) 2001-04

Tired and disillusioned, Corcoran walked away from the game at the age of 27 to very little fanfare. He simply felt he had no more to give and was content until the night of Cork's All-Ireland defeat in 2003, when he began to reconsider.

By the following April he was a Cork player again and would win two more All-Ireland medals before retiring for good in '06.

Ollie Canning (Galway)


The fallout from the 2006 Galway hurling final kept Canning away from the county team in '07, Ger Loughnane's first year in charge.

Canning's disappointment with the investigation into the incident that marred Portumna's defeat to Loughrea clearly affected his decision. It wasn't until after Portumna's All-Ireland club success in '08 that he returned.

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