Sligo’s Eamonn O’Hara retires from inter-county football

Tourlestrane player bows out after 19 years

Eamonn O’Hara has retired from inter-county football with Sligo after 19 years. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Eamonn O’Hara has retired from inter-county football with Sligo after 19 years. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

 

All Star Sligo footballer Eamonn O’Hara has announced he is to retire from inter-county football after 19 years.

The 37-year-old Tourlestrane player, who was the longest serving senior inter-county player in the country, has joined RTÉ’s Sunday Game panel and also intends to take a more prominent role with the Gaelic Players Association.

Announcing the reasons behind his decision, O’Hara said in a statement: “It is with both sadness and a sense of great personal achievement that I announce my retirement from inter-county football today.

“While Gaelic football has been and continues to be a massive part of my life, I believe after nearly two decades wearing the Sligo jersey, the time is right for me to step aside. I do so knowing that I was very privileged to have played for my county, my province and my country.”

O’Hara was named on the All Star team in 2002 and also represented Ireland twice in the International Rules Series, something he admitted he was particularly proud of.

“To represent your county is an honour but to have been afforded the opportunity to play 19 seasons for Sligo is truly humbling. I have played with and against some of the best footballers ever to have graced a football pitch and I have developed great friendships along the way.

“I would like to thank everyone who has supported me during my career, my club Tourlestrane, my close friends and especially my family, whose loyalty and patience has underpinned my commitment to county football.

“I will continue playing with Tourlestrane but I also look forward to pursuing other opportunities including my new role working with RTÉ’s Sunday Game team as a football analyst and getting more involved with the Gaelic Players Association past players group.”

O’Hara also announced that he will he hosting a charity testimonial match involving Sligo and Rest of Ireland selection, with proceeds going to the Sligo Hospice.