Ballyhale Shamrocks manager Henry Shefflin remembered the late Eugene Aylward after yesterday’s county final win — Shamrocks panellist Aylward passed away a few weeks ago and captain Michael Fennelly dedicated the title win to him.
“We lost Eoin Doyle last year, a member of our team, in a tragic accident,” said Fennelly.
“Unfortunately only four or five weeks ago we lost another team member, Eugene Aylward. Eugene was a fun-loving character, full of smiles.
“If he was here today he’d be standing there, looking up smiling with a big happy face and for the next two or three days’ celebrations.
“That’s the kind of lad Eugene always was. A great, great character. As some people used to say, he was a big teddy bear.
To his mother Marie, his father Pat and to his brother Cian, words, they have meaning, but actions speak louder and I hope our actions over the last couple of weeks have helped ye on that journey and gave ye some sort of comfort, no matter how small it is and this cup here is dedicated to Eugene’s name.
Shefflin echoed his captain’s comments: “These chaps have had a trying four weeks since Eugene’s passing. We let them off that week but they’ve been playing week in week out. Today was about Eugene and remembering Eugene.
“Last year we were fortunate to win it in Eoin’s memory and as Michael (Fennelly) said, this is in Eugene’s memory.
“I’ll tell them in the dressing-room they’ll celebrate more after this than last year, because life is cruel, and there’s been a sadness and a darkness around our community in Ballyhale.
“They deserve a bit of lightness in their lives now and we’ll let them enjoy themselves and we’ll see then after that.”