|Full name||Jeremiah Paul Flannery|
|Date of birth||17 October 1978|
|Place of birth||Galway, Republic of Ireland|
|Height||1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)|
|School||St. Munchin's College|
|University||University College Cork|
|Notable relative(s)||Jerry Flannery(father)|
|Rugby union career|
|Professional / senior clubs|
|Years||Club / team||Caps||(points)|
|correct as of 18 Jun 2011.|
|Years||Club / team||Caps||(points)|
|correct as of 12 Sep 2011.|
Jeremiah Paul "Jerry" Flannery (born 17 October 1978 in Galway, Republic of Ireland) is a former Irish rugby union player who played at hooker for Munster and Ireland. He retired in March 2012 due to injury problems.
Although capped at Ireland Schools level while attending St Munchin's College Limerick, and with a fine underage pedigree, Flannery had to wait patiently for his opportunities, but made the most of those that eventually came his way.
He began his professional career with Connacht, where he spent two seasons vying for the hooker's jersey with Marnus Uijs.
Flannery then moved to Munster, where he initially found his opportunities severely restricted by the consistent form of Frankie Sheahan, a regular Ireland international. He did, however, make his Heineken Cup debut as a replacement against Stade Français at Thomond Park in the quarter final in April 2004, which Munster won 37–32.
Following a serious neck injury to Sheahan in 2005, Flannery made the Munster Number 2 jersey his own. Voted Man-of-the-Match on his first try-scoring Heineken Cup start against Castres, Flannery's outstanding form and obvious ability to compete at the highest level meant that he was promptly called into the Ireland squad, and made his international debut against Romania in November 2005 where he came on as a replacement. He played a key part in Munster's Heineken Cup winning teams of 2005/06 and 2007/08. He missed the majority of the 2009/10 season through injury, playing only 6 matches, and has also missed much of the 2010/11 season, again through injury, featuring only against Toulon in October and Ulster in January so far. His most recent injury occurred during the Ulster game.
By January 2006, Flannery was installed as Ireland's first-choice hooker, and played his first full international game against Italy in the RBS 6 Nations. He retained his place in the side that claimed the Triple crown in 2006, and was unanimously chosen as the Six Nations' best hooker of that season. In the 2006 mid year test series Flannery played all the matches against New Zealand and Australia scoring one try. Bedevilled by injury in late 2006, Flannery briefly lost his place in the Ireland side to Ulster's Rory Best. Flannery did, however, appear as a replacement in each of Ireland's Six Nations fixtures in 2007. Having toured Argentina with the shadow squad, he was also a try-scoring member of Ireland's 2007 Rugby World Cup squad in France, starting the games against France and Argentina. He was a member of the victorious Ireland team that won the 2009 Six Nations Championship and Grand Slam. Flannery was suspended for 8 weeks in 2008 for stamping on Julien Bonnaire; the penalty was subsequently reduced to 4 weeks, which allowed him to play in the 6 Nations tournament. In February 2010, Flannery was cited for "an alleged kick" on France wing Alexis Palisson during the 2010 Six Nations Championship defeat in Paris. He received a six-week ban which ruled him out of the remainder of the 2010 Six Nations.
Flannery missed the 2010 June Tests, the 2010 November Tests and the 2011 Six Nations through injury, but was selected in Ireland's preliminary squad for the 2011 World Cup warms-ups in August. He made his comeback against Scotland in the 2011 Rugby World Cup warm-up in August, and was selected in Ireland's 30-man squad for the World Cup. Despite coming through Ireland's four warm-up Tests in August and the first pool game against US Eagles in September, Flannery suffered a recurrence of the troublesome calf injury in training and was forced to withdraw from Ireland's World Cup squad, being replaced by Damien Varley. He stayed in New Zealand for the second pool game a week later against Australia, handing out the match jerseys to the players before the fixture, an occasion described as 'emotional' by the Irish players and staff. The opening game against the USA turned out to be Flannery's last for Ireland, as injury ruled him out of the 2012 Six Nations Championship and forced him to retire in March 2012.
British and Irish Lions
On 21 April 2009, Flannery was named as a member of the British and Irish Lions for the 2009 tour to South Africa. On 21 May, however, he sustained an elbow injury during training which ruled him out of the tour.
On 21 March 2012 Flannery, who had battled against a series of long-term injuries, announced his retirement.
Upon retiring, the 33-year old released the following statement…
"I'm very sad to have to announce my immediate retirement from rugby due to injury. Since my injury at the 2011 World Cup, I've struggled to regain the level of fitness required to play at this level and, after consulting with the medical staff at Munster and at Ireland, I am announcing my retirement with immediate effect. I would like to thank all the medical staff who have worked so hard on my behalf and shown great patience in dealing with me.
I feel incredibly privileged to have played with so many great players with Munster and with Ireland. To train hard and win trophies for Munster and Ireland alongside some of my best friends has been an amazing experience. I'm incredibly grateful for all the opportunities rugby has given me to date and I would like to thank all my friends, family, coaches and teammates for their support along the way.
Finally, I would like to thank all the Munster and Irish rugby fans who I have been so proud to represent over the course of my career, your level of support has been amazing and I can never thank you all enough. It's been emotional!"
His career after rugby will be focussed on the pub his family owns in Catherine Street, Limerick, "Jerry Flannery's bar". He has also started a masters degree in Sports Performance at the University of Limerick.
- Roberts, Gareth (22 March 2009). "2009 Six Nations". BBC Sport. Retrieved 23 March 2009.
- Drabble, Joe (5 February 2008). "Flannery to appeal charge". Sky Sports. Retrieved 16 February 2010.
- "Flannery Has Suspension Reduced". 6 February 2008. Retrieved 16 February 2010.[dead link]
- "Jerry Flannery cited over incident with Alexis Palisson". BBC Sport. 15 February 2010. Retrieved 15 February 2010.
- "Ireland's Jerry Flannery to appeal against six-week ban". BBC Sport. 24 February 2010. Retrieved 24 February 2010.
- "Rugby World Cup 2011: Ireland hooker Jerry Flannery out of World Cup". BBC Sport. 14 September 2011. Retrieved 14 September 2011.
- "British & Irish Lions tour squad announced". The British and Irish Lions official website. 21 April 2009. Retrieved 21 April 2009.
- Thornley, Gerry (21 May 2009). "Flannery out of Lions tour". Irish Times. Retrieved 21 May 2009.
- "Flannery retires from rugby, O'Leary set to move to London Irish at end of season". RTE Sport. 22 March 2012. Archived from the original on 22 March 2012. Retrieved 22 March 2012.
- Thornley, Gerry (21 March 2012). "Flannery forced to hang up his boots". Irish Times. Retrieved 21 March 2012.
- "Master of his own destiny". irishexaminer.com. 22 March 2012. Retrieved 22 March 2012.
- "Munster legend Jerry Flannery lands Arsenal coaching role". independent.ie. 2 July 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2013.