Thursday, 22 September 2011

In The Spotlight - Paul Murphy (Dungiven)

It seems like Paul Murphy has been playing for Dungiven forever.  He was just a fresh faced 18 year old when Dungiven last won the John McLaughlin Cup, back in 1997.  They beat Castledawson in the final that year, Paul was listed at number 12. 
They went on to win the Ulster title, beating Errigal Ciaran 0-14 to 1-9 in the final at Clones, with Paul scoring a point from the half forward line.  Here was Paul’s pen-pic from the 1997 county final.
The powerfully built minor has had a great underage career but came of age in the games against Lavey.  He was magnificent in the replay.  He is a wonderful fielder and a strong runner with the ball.  He is a most exciting player to watch.  His father Andy managed Dungiven in the 1984 win over Castledawson.
Since that day Paul Murphy has been an ever present for Dungiven.  He has also been a regular fixture in the Derry team.  I always remember his tremendous first half display in Croke Park in 2007 against Dublin.
This Sunday, he will be back at Celtic Park, hoping to reverse the 2008 semi final defeat to the Shamrocks and take a step closer to the county title.  Here is Paul Murphy’s penpic, the 2011 version.
Name: Paul Murphy
Nickname: None
Club: St Canice’s Dungiven
Age: 33
Height: 5,11
Weight: 13st 10
Occupation: Metal fixer
Boots/Gloves Worn: Puma Boots, Breathe gloves
Favourite Film:  Heat with Al Pacino and Robert Di Niro.
Favourite Song:  Knocked Up - Kings of Leon
Favourite Food: Fillet steak and chips with all the trimmings
Favourite Drink: Cool pint of Carlsberg.
Favourite pitch: Home club pitch in Dungiven.
Best thing about playing football: A knees up with the lads back at the club after a good win.
Worst thing about football: Post-mortems.
Pre Match Meal: Bar of chocolate.
Pre Game Superstition: None now, used to wear socks inside out for some strange reason.
Toughest opponent: There are too many to mention.    
Best player played with: Fergal Doherty among several.
Sporting Highlight: Winning the Ulster Club title in 1997.
Biggest Disappointment: All Ireland club semi-final 1998 defeat by Corofin and All Ireland Quarter Final 2007 defeat by Dublin.
Childhood idol: Henry Downey.
Biggest influence in your career: My Father, Andy.
Advice for young players: Stay off the liquor.
Best trainer in the club: Stephen O’Kane, AKA, Skinny.
Worst trainer in the club: Stephen O’Kane, AKA, Skinny.
Other Sports played: I played hurling up until I was 19.
NOTE…The curtain raiser for the 1997 County Final at Celtic Park was the U16 final between Ballinderry and Dungiven.  Below are the teams as listed in the programme that day.
BALLINDERRY: Stephen Scullion, Martin Scullion, Martin Cassidy, Brendan Conway, Colum Mullan, Kevin McGuckin, Pat Crozier, Jarlath Bell, James Conway, Mark McGeehan, Cathal Cassidy, Killian Conlan, Philip Muldoon, Ronan Devlin, Thomas Maynes.  Among the subs were Michael Bell and another Kevin McGuckin, probably Kevin Moss.
DUNGIVEN: Rory McBride, Colm Kelly, Paul Sweeney, Raymond Craig, Eoin Hasson, Cahir Mullan, Fergal Hargan, Aaron McCloskey, Eunan O’Kane, Martin Hasson, Gavin McLaughlin, Stephen McGuigan, Cathal Duffy, Kevin McCloskey, Eunan Murphy.

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