CORK manager Denis Walsh has confirmed that All Star forward Joe Deane, pictured, has retired, paying tribute to the Killeagh clubman as “one of the top players of all time”.
Deane, 32 this year, won three All-Ireland senior medals (1999, 2004 and 2005) as well as two U21 All-Ireland medals and a minor All-Ireland.
“Joe is retired, definitely,” said Walsh after Cork’s defeat by Waterford in the NHL yesterday. “I saw him play two club matches in the last week and he was unbelievable. He’s been a brilliant player, one of the top players of all time.
“Brian Murphy as well, he got a few dirty jobs like I did myself 20 years ago. He doesn’t feel at the minute that he’s just right fitness-wise and so on. He’s only 27, I’d be hoping he’d come back into the fray at the end of the year.”
Walsh had better news of two other Cork veterans.
“Timmy McCarthy is back,” said Walsh. “Diarmuid O’Sullivan is back playing club games and we’ll want to see what the situation is there.”
Meanwhile, his Waterford counterpart Davy Fitzgerald hit back at suggestions that the Déise had been dirty in the All-Ireland final defeat to Kilkenny last year.
Confirming that star defender Ken McGrath is struggling to be fit for the June 14th Munster SHC clash with Limerick, Fitzgerald also referred to criticism of Waterford’s tactics last September.
“We were not dirty in the All-Ireland final,” said Fitzgerald. “I take exception to that. We stood up, shoulder to shoulder. We weren’t going to be bullied. We pulled no dirty stroke. If anyone can show me where a hurley was hit against someone else, I’ll say I was wrong. There was a lot of jostling but I don’t know why Waterford were made out to be the bad guys.”
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved