Wednesday 23 January 2019

Green giant Gormley gets big send-off

 

Fitting farewell: Ronan Gormley. Photo: Sportsfile
Fitting farewell: Ronan Gormley. Photo: Sportsfile

Stephen Findlater

One of Ireland's greatest players of all time is to play one last game in the green jersey, with Ronan Gormley's career set to be celebrated this afternoon.

A special match between an Ireland select team and a Pembroke selection will take place at Serpentine Avenue (3.0), offering a great occasion for the Irish hockey public to pay tribute to a true great.

Gormley retired from international hockey last autumn following 13 years in the Irish set-up. During that time, he won 256 caps, captaining his country 121 times.

Now 35, Gormley was a member of the first Ireland Irish team to win a medal at the European Championships in 2015 and he also played at the Rio Olympics in 2016.

On the domestic scene, he was a member of Pembroke team that won an incredible quintet of trophies in the 2008-'09 season, including the EuroHockey Trophy gold.

For the celebration, an array of Gormley's team-mates from throughout his playing career will turn out for one last time and all are welcome for what promises to be a fitting send-off.

Long-time Pembroke and Ireland team-mate Conor Harte commented: "I'm delighted to be able to celebrate the career of one of the driving forces behind the success of the Irish team over the last few years.

Dedication "Ronan was an example to all of us and we would love if as many people as possible turned out to celebrate his dedication and commitment to the Irish team."

Domestically, most of the club action is indoors this weekend, with both Leinster and Munster having a full schedule of games.

Meanwhile, the Ireland women's squad flew to Chile yesterday for a warm-weather training camp.

Many of those not involved in Graham Shaw's immediate plans will be action in the preliminary round of the Jacqui Potter Cup.

Irish Independent

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