Tuesday 16 July 2019

Sherry's forced to quit career that promised more

Sherry left Munster for Gloucester on loan back in March in a bid to resurrect his career and although that wasn’t to be, he bows out with his head held high. Photo: Diarmuid Greene/Sportsfile
Sherry left Munster for Gloucester on loan back in March in a bid to resurrect his career and although that wasn’t to be, he bows out with his head held high. Photo: Diarmuid Greene/Sportsfile
Cian Tracey

Cian Tracey

Such have been the extent of Mike Sherry's injury problems since he won his one and only Ireland cap in 2013 that it's easy to forget how highly he was rated.

Yesterday came the news that has threatened for a while now, as he was forced to hang up his boots.

Sherry will do so proud of what he achieved in his 10-year professional career, but at the back of his mind will naturally be that feeling of 'what might have been'. An abrasive hooker who broke on to the scene in 2009, Sherry was once seen as the long-term successor to Jerry Flannery. However, sport can be cruel.

"The prospect of picking up another contract was something I was very much pursuing, but the longer it went on the more I realised my body was telling me to stop," Sherry said.

The first of the 31-year-old's injury problems occurred in 2011 when he damaged his ankle - little did the Limerick native know that it would be the start of repeated trips to the treatment room.

In amongst the many disappointing moments, there were plenty of high points, particularly when he became one of Munster's youngest ever captains when he led his home province in 2013.

That was the same year his reputation was gathering serious momentum and it wasn't long until international honours followed.

Sherry had already spent plenty of time in and around the Ireland squad as well as representing the Wolfhounds before he made his debut against the USA on the summer tour. He joins a group of players who made a single appearance for Ireland, but that is one more than most people have managed.

The former Ardscoil Rís student and Garryowen man ruptured his cruciate ligament later in 2013 and soon after had to undergo two shoulder surgeries before a back problem cost him more time out.

Sherry left Munster for Gloucester on loan back in March in a bid to resurrect his career and although that wasn't to be, he bows out with his head held high, safe in the knowledge that scoring 12 tries in 108 appearances for a club as big as Munster is a remarkable achievement by anyone's standards.

Irish Independent

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