Former Kerry footballer DJ Crowley passes away
Rathmore player was regarded as best player in 1969 All-Ireland final
The death has taken place of former Kerry footballer DJ Crowley. It was announced on the county’s GAA website on Friday. Crowley from Rathmore had a relatively short inter-county career between 1967 and ’71 but achieved a great deal in that time.
Although best remembered as the centrefield partner of the great Mick O’Connell, he played at full forward in his first All-Ireland final in 1968 against Down. That was lost but the team came back in 1969 and ’70 to win the championship in both years.
In 1969 he was by consensus the best player on the field in the final against Offaly. In The Irish Times Paddy Downey described his performance in a disappointing match as follows:
“There were however a few redeeming features in the game. The most admirable of these was DJ Crowley’s magnificent midfield performance for Kerry. This, surely, was the finest game of the Rathmore man’s career. With Mick O’Connell playing below his usual brilliant form, Crowley took on more work than would normally be required of him at midfield and despite a couple of hard knocks he dominated the game from start to finish.
“If the wind was a handicap for others the Cork-based Garda overcame it with astonishing ease. His fielding was wonderful, his kicking shrewd and his movements with the ball a marvel of control.”
A year later he was back with the team, this time winning the first 80-minute final, four minutes from the end of which he scored one of the great All-Ireland goals to seal defeat for Meath.
He also won three Munster and three NFL medals. He was only in his mid-20s when forced to retire by injury.