Cork captain Graham Canty retires from county

Cork captain Graham Canty retires from county

Long-serving captain Graham Canty has become the latest Cork player to announce his retirement from senior inter-county following, joining recent retirees Noel O'Leary and Paudie Kissane in bowing out.

Canty follows fellow defenders O'Leary and Kissane in quitting the inter-county scene and the 33-year-old, who works as a Bord Gáis engineer, insists he is leaving the Rebels set-up with 'no regrets'.

The Bantry Blues clubman, who captained Cork to their last All-Ireland SFC title in 2010, said: "I've been involved (with Cork) since 2000, so I've had a good run at it.

"There are no regrets, certainly. I'm glad to be finishing up with Cork while the body is in good enough nick. I'll be continuing with the club, 100%.

"When you're playing inter-county, you don't train with your club, realistically, so I'll be glad to fall back in with the lads in Bantry again."

In an Irish Examiner interview published today, Canty added: "It was a great honour to play for Cork, and to captain Cork, obviously, but it was also hugely enjoyable. I was very lucky to have such great support from family, from my club, from the various management teams, all of which allowed me to play for Cork.

"Did I think I'd still be playing football for Cork in 2013, when I started off back in 2000? I'd have been happy if you'd told me I'd still be playing football, full stop."

Canty's 61st and final Championship outing for Cork came in last August's All-Ireland quarter-final loss to Dublin. In the aftermath, Cork manager Conor Counihan stepped down after six years in charge.

Canty's list of individual and team honours includes the aforementioned All-Ireland success, four Munster SFC medals, three Division 1 league medals and three All-Star awards. He also played in Cork's All-Ireland final losses to arch rivals Kerry in 2007 and 2009.

Counihan immediately recognised Canty's leadership qualities and installed him as the Rebels captain in 2008. He previously captained the Cork Under-21s to provincial success in 2001 and went on to represent Ireland in seven International Rules series, captaining the 2003 side and enjoying series wins in 2001, 2004 and 2008.

Cork GAA Chairman Bob Ryan said: "Graham's service to Cork GAA has been tremendous, and his dedication, determination and commitment are an example to players everywhere.

"A natural leader, he has won the respect and admiration of both team-mates and opponents over many years. We wish him all the very best in his future endeavours."

A statement from the Cork County Board added: "Having served as captain since 2008, Graham Canty has won his place in GAA history as one of only seven men to bring the Sam Maguire Cup back to Cork, and his overall contribution to Cork GAA has been immense. Ní bheidh a leithéad arís ann."

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