Former Limerick hurler Jimmy O’Donoghue dies

O'Donoghue hurled for clubs in Limerick, Donegal, Dublin, and Galway.
Former Limerick hurler Jimmy O’Donoghue dies
Jimmy O’Donoghue with his 1947 National Hurling League winners medal at home in Finglas. Picture: Moya Nolan

Former Limerick hurler Jimmy O’Donoghue has died, aged 92.

O’Donoghue, who was raised near the Blackboy Bridge, between Cappamore and Doon, won a National Hurling League medal as a teenager for the 1946-47 campaign, playing in the replayed final against Kilkenny, which took place in March 1948 at Croke Park.

Speaking in a big interview with the Irish Examiner last year, O’Donoghue said he was called on at half-time for an unexpected substitute appearance.

“We were all there in the middle of the field, because at the time you didn’t go back into the dressing room at half-time. Jackie O’Connell [secretary of the Limerick County Board] came down to me and said: ‘You’re on. You’re on next.’ So I said: ‘I’ve no jersey.’ Because they didn’t have enough jerseys to go around, and I was probably way down the subs list beforehand.

“He said: ‘Get one, I want you on immediately after half-time. Get one off one of the other subs.’ Paddy Creamer, who was from Cappamore, heard O’Connell. I looked around. Paddy said: ‘Here, take mine.’ So, on the sideline, he just threw off his coat, pulled the jersey off, and I put it on.

“But in my haste I put the feckin’ thing on upside down. And didn’t notice, until someone said it to me afterwards. It was showing number 81… That actually happened.”

Kilkenny’s Pat ‘Diamond’ Hayden and Limerick’s Jimmy O’Donoghue (second left) contest possession in the 1947 NHL final on March 8, 1948 in Croke Park.
Kilkenny’s Pat ‘Diamond’ Hayden and Limerick’s Jimmy O’Donoghue (second left) contest possession in the 1947 NHL final on March 8, 1948 in Croke Park.

A regular half-back, O'Donoghue was put in at half-forward and played his part in John Mulcahy's clinching goal.

A civil servant, he hurled for clubs in Limerick, Donegal, Dublin, and Galway, before settling in Finglas.

He is survived by his wife Phil, and children Aileen, Gerard, John, Michael, and Jim.

You can read Jimmy O’Donoghue's full July 2019 interview with PM O'Sullivan here.

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