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Irish Panel 2006

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Irish Panel 2006


(The order does not indicate any ranking in the panel, playing position or possible squad number)

Alan QuirkePlayer Picture
Club:   Cork
International Rules Appearances:   0
Becomes Ireland’s fourth goalkeeper in four series, following in the footsteps of Mickey Mc Veigh (2005), Stephen Cluxton (2004) and Enda Murphy (2003). Enjoyed a very good year with his county as Cork captured the Munster football title, before an All Ireland semi-final exit to Kerry in August.

Paul BardenPlayer Picture
Club:   Longford
International Rules Appearances:   0
The Clonguish man will be hoping to make his International Rules debut in this year’s series. Had an impressive year in the championship with a revitalised Longford, helping them to a fourth round qualifier appearance. A strong ball carrier, he is deadly accurate when given space.

Colm BegleyPlayer Picture
Club:    Laois (& Brisbane Lions)
International Rules Appearances:    0
Was one of the rising stars of the Irish game before his transfer to the Lions. Has enjoyed a meteoric rise through the ranks of the Brisbane team and has firmly established himself as a player of some note in the AFL. Like Tadhg Kennelly and Setanta O hAlpin he will have in depth knowledge of the Australian game.

Joe BerginPlayer Picture
Club:   Galway
International Rules Appearances:   6
Was a member of the Ireland team in 2004 which defeated Australia under the stewardship of Pete Mc Grath having made his international rules debut in 2002. An excellent fielder, is normally deployed by Galway at either centrefield or in the half forward line. A member of the Mountbellew/Moylough club

Alan BroganPlayer Picture
Club:   Dublin
International Rules Appearances:   2
Son of former Dublin legend Bernard, Brogan’s form for Dublin as they reached this year’s All Ireland semi final was impressive and it is no surprise to see him receive a call up to the International squad. Speed to the ball will cause problems for any defence. Last appeared in 2004 when he scored 9 points in two tests.

Sean CavanaghPlayer Picture
Club:    Tyrone
International Rules Appearances:   4
Much discussion this time last year as to whether he would make the change to the AFL, but decided to concentrate his energies on Tyrone’s quest for a third All Ireland this decade instead. Scored 32 points in his four international rules appearances in 2004 and 2005. A player vital to Ireland’s cause.

Ronan ClarkePlayer Picture
Club:   Armagh
International Rules Appearances:   2
Made his Ireland debut in the Subiacco Oval in Perth last October. A strong, forceful player, he has acted as an impressive target man for Armagh since winning his first All Ireland with the county in 2002. Likely to be deployed in a deep attacking role for his country this series.

Kieran DonaghyPlayer Picture
Club:   Kerry
International Rules Appearances:   0
May well be expected to be to Ireland what Barry Hall is to Australia. The Tralee based basketballer transformed Kerry’s season when moved to the edge of the square in the fourth round qualifier against Longford and was one of the main reasons that the champions scored 12 goals in their last 4 championship games. Tremendous aerial ability.


Dermot EarlyPlayer Picture
Club:    Kildare
International Rules Appearances:    6
While Early did tour Australia last Autumn, it was as a member of the Irish defence forces team. Injuries have been unkind to this fine player in recent years, but he received a recall to the Irish panel this year, having last featured for his country in 2001. His uncle, Roscommon player Paul, played against Australia in 1987.


Kieran FitzgeraldPlayer Picture
Club:   Galway
International Rules Appearances:    0
Fitzgerald came to prominence a number of years back as an up and coming defender when he starred on the Galway team that won the All Ireland title in 2001, alongside Ireland selector Padraic Joyce. For a big man, he is exceptionally mobile and should be well suited to the International game.


Paul GalvinPlayer Picture
Club:    Kerry
International Rules Appearances:    2
Impressed in his debut season at International level when he helped Ireland to series victory in 2004. Missed out on last year’s trip to Australia but after another impressive season in which he won a second All Ireland medal with Kerry, he returns to the International fold. A hardworking half forward.


Graham GeraghtyPlayer Picture
Club:    Meath
International Rules Appearances:    7
A man who will need no introduction to either set of supporters, Geraghty last appeared in an Ireland jersey in 2002. The appointment of his old mentor Sean Boylan as manager of the Ireland set-up was always likely to result in Geraghty’s return to an Ireland shirt. A classy forward and double All Ireland medal winner.


Tom KellyPlayer Picture
Club:   Laois
International Rules Appearances:   6
An incredibly consistent player for his country since making his debut in 2003. Gave an outstanding performance in the Telstra dome last Autumn. Attacks the ball with ferocity, his handling, tackling and kicking skills are all first rate. Won a Leinster Championship medal with Laois in 2003.


Tadhg KennellyPlayer Picture
Club:    Kerry (Sydney Swans)
International Rules Appearances:    6
His absence from the Irish squad Down Under last year had a huge effect on the series and his availability this year will be a source of much comfort to manager Boylan. Having appeared in the last two Grand Finals for the Swans, his form at the moment is excellent and Ireland will need him at his very best. The team’s vice-captain


Karl LaceyPlayer Picture
Club:    Donegal
International Rules Appearances:    0
Another of the debutants in the Ireland side, his performances for Donegal in their march to an All Ireland quarter final appearances were top drawer and earned him an All Star nomination. A member of the Four Masters club in Donegal Town with whom he won a county championship medal in 2003.


Sean Martin LockhartPlayer Picture
Club:    Derry
International Rules Appearances:    14
Ireland’s most capped player, he is the only player from either side to have been involved in every International Rules game since the series was revived in 1998. That kind of experience is invaluable, but so too is his will to win and absolute determination in defence where he plays with the heart of a lion.

Stephen Mc DonnellPlayer Picture
Club:    Armagh
International Rules Appearances:    3
May only have featured in three games for Ireland thus far (having made his debut in 2003), but Australia will be well aware of the scoring threat he poses. His two appearances on tour in 2003 yielded a staggering 34 points! His last game for Ireland before this series came in Croke Park in 2004’s 1st Test when he notched another 12 points.

Kieran Mc Geeney (Captain)Player Picture
Club:   Armagh
International Rules Appearances:    8
Armagh’s All Ireland winning captain of 2002 returns to International duty, also as captain, having last played under John O Keefe’s stewardship in 2003. A tough tackling, hard running half back, he made his Ireland debut as far back as 1998 and his experience and dressing room presence will be a big lift to the Irish camp.


Anthony MoylesPlayer Picture
Club:    Meath
International Rules Appearances:    0
A nephew of Mayo great Tom Langan and a talented hurler (he captained the Meath minor team), Moyles holds a Leinster Junior Championship medal with his club St Pauls and is generally a solid performer in the middle of the park for the Royal county.


Nicholas MurphyPlayer Picture
Club:    Cork
International Rules Appearances:    0
Surprisingly, the big Corkman enters the 2006 series having yet to feature for his country. His form this year as the Rebels took the Munster crown was exemplary and his mobility around the field and strength under the high ball would seem to indicate that he has all the necessary qualities to adopt to the International game.

Aidan O'MahoneyPlayer Picture
Club:    Kerry
International Rules Appearances:    0
Won a second All Ireland medal in a Kerry jersey in September and has proven one of the most consistent defenders in Gaelic football over the past few seasons. Speed over the ground is matched by his speed of thought and a steely determination to be always first to the ball

Marc O'SéPlayer Picture
Club:    Kerry
International Rules Appearances:    0
Becomes the third of Kerry’s famous O’Sé brothers to feature for his country, following in the footsteps of Daragh and Tomás who both featured on four occasions each. A native Irish speaker, he is tigerish in defence and loves to sally forward for a pop at goal when given the opportunity.

Kevin ReillyPlayer Picture
Club:    Meath
International Rules Appearances:    0
Won a Sigerson Cup medal with D.C.U last Spring when he was in inspirational form in the full back line. Has had a busy Autumn too, as he was part of the Navan O Mahony’s team defeated by Wolfe Tones in the Meath County final at the beginning of October and then received his first call up to the International squad.

Shane RyanPlayer Picture
Club:    Dublin
International Rules Appearances:    2
Another who makes a return to the Ireland set-up after a considerable absence, Ryan last featured in 2003. This summer he excelled in the midfield role as Dublin won the Leinster championship and indeed had he remained at midfield in the semi-final against Mayo, Dublin might well have hung on to appear in the All Ireland itself.

Sean Boylan has named three players who will be on standby for selection.  They are Stephen O'Neill of Tyrone, Dessie Dolan of Westmeath and Darragh Ó Sé of Kerry.

Management Team

Sean BoylanPlayer Picture
One of the most decorated managers in Gaelic Football, he was manager of the Meath team from 1982 until 2005 – a record in itself - and is quite simply a legend of the game. As Meath boss, he led the county to their first All Ireland victory in 20 years when they captured the All Ireland title of 1987. He repeated the feat in 1988 before assembling a second team in the 90’s that delivered All Ireland glory in 1996 and 1999. A herbalist by profession, he played hurling for his county and is acknowledged throughout Ireland as a connoisseur of Gaelic Football.


Eoin "Bomber" ListonPlayer Picture
Eoin “Bomber” Liston
Supporters of a certain age will remember the Bomber’s storming performances in an Ireland jersey in the mid-80’s. Won 7 All Ireland medals with Kerry between 1978 and 1986, scoring three goals in the ’78 decider against Dublin. Will look forward to renewing acquaintance with the Dipper this year.


Hugh KennyPlayer Picture
Kenny brings a wealth of coaching experience to the backroom team having managed several prominent teams in the past, including his native Wicklow with whom he starred for many years. Was also in charge of the Ireland U-17 International Rules team.


Anthony TohillPlayer Picture
Will need no introduction to Australian supporters. A former captain of his country, Tohill made no fewer than 8 appearances in an Ireland jersey and was one of the finest exponents of the International game during his involvement. An All Ireland medal winner with Derry in 1993.


Padraic JoycePlayer Picture
Another former Irish captain, Joyce led Ireland to Series glory in 2004. He was also captain of last year’s team that toured Australia and appeared on 11 occasions for his country having made his debut in 2000. In that time, he amassed 59 points for his country


Ireland's Captain Kieran McGeeney made his international debut for Ireland when the Rules series was revived in 1998 and since then has represented his country on 8 occasions in five separate Series. His last involvement was as part of the Ireland team to tour Australia in 2003, when he scored three points as Ireland lost on aggregate by seven points, despite winning the 2nd test. Mr Boylan described Kieran McGeeney as a natural leader and said he was delighted to have a player of such experience available to captain the side.

It was also confirmed that Tadhg Kennelly will fill the role of vice-captain. The Sydney Swans clubman, who played Gaelic Football for Listowel Emmett’s and Kerry before moving to the AFL missed last year’s Series through injury, but in his six International appearances to date since his debut in 2001 he has scored 48 points and is generally considered one of the most accomplished exponents of the International game.