Paul Curran (hurler)

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Paul Curran
Personal information
Irish name Pól Ó Corráin
Sport Hurling
Position Full-back
Born (1981-11-11) 11 November 1981 (age 35)
Mullinahone, County Tipperary, Ireland
Height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Occupation Primary school teacher
Club(s)
Years Club
Mullinahone
Club titles
Tipperary titles 1
Colleges(s)
Years College
Waterford Institute of Technology
College titles
Fitzgibbon titles 1
Inter-county(ies)*
Years County Apps (scores)
2001–2015 Tipperary 43 (0-00)
Inter-county titles
Munster titles 4
All-Irelands 1
NHL 1
All Stars 2
*Inter County team apps and scores correct as of 20:28, 30 April 2015.

Paul Curran (born 11 November 1981) is an Irish hurler who played as a full-back for the Tipperary senior team.[1]

Born in Mullinahone, County Tipperary, Curran first arrived on the inter-county scene at the age of sixteen when he first linked up with the Tipperary minor teams as a dual player before later joining the under-21 hurling side. He joined the senior panel during the 2001 championship. Curran subsequently became a regular member of the starting fifteen and won one All-Ireland medal, four Munster medals and one National Hurling League medal. He was an All-Ireland runner-up on three occasions.

As a member of the Munster inter-provincial team on a number of occasions, Curran won one Railway Cup medal. At club level he is a one-time championship medallist with Mullinahone.

His brothers, Niall and Seán, have also represented Tipperary in both Gaelic football and hurling respectively.

Throughout his career Curran made 43 championship appearances. After being released from the Tipperary senior team he announced his retirement on 30 April 2015.[2][3][4][5][6][7]

Playing career[edit]

University[edit]

During his studies at the Waterford Institute of Technology, Curran was an automatic inclusion on the college hurling team. After losing the decider in 2002, his side were back the following year and faced Cork Institute of Technology in the final. A 0–13 to 1–7 victory gave Curran a Fitzgibbon Cup medal as captain of the team.

Club[edit]

After winning several divisional championship titles with Mullinahine, the highlight of Curran's club career came in 2002 when the club reached the final of the senior championship for only the second time in their history. Local kingpins Thurles Sarsfields provided the opposition, however, in spite of leading by six points coming into the final quarter, the game ended in a 0–14 apiece draw. The replay was more conclusive. Eoin Kelly scored a remarkable 2–7 as Mullinahone claimed a 2–10 to 1–11 victory. Not only was it Curran's first championship medal but it was also a first title for Mullinahone.[8]

Inter-county[edit]

Curran was just sixteen years-old when he made his minor championship debut for Tipperary as a dual player in 1998. He collected a Munster medal the following year after a 1–13 to 2–7 defeat of Clare.

After failing to make the under-21 team in 2000, Curran spent the following two seasons on the team, however, Limerick dominated the championship at the time.

Curran made his senior debut for Tipperary on 15 April 2001 in a 0–20 to 2–8 defeat of Cork in the group stage of the National Hurling League. He later won a league medal, albeit as a non-playing substitute, following a 1–19 to 0–17 defeat of Clare.[9] Curran was later included on Tipperary's championship panel and collected a set of Munster and All-Ireland medals, once again as a non-playing substitute, following respective defeats of Limerick and Galway.[10][11]

On 13 July 2002 Curran made his senior championship debut in a 2–19 to 1–9 qualifier defeat of Offaly.[12] He became a regular member of the team in the last line of defence, however, Tipperary endured a disappointing period.

After remaining undefeated during their 2008 league campaign, Tipperary qualified for the decider against Galway. A Lar Corbett goal proved decisive in the 3–18 to 3–16 victory.[13] It was Curran's first league medal on the field. He later collected a first Munster medal on the field of play as Tipperary continued their winning streak with a 2–21 to 0–19 defeat of a resurgent Clare.[14]

Tipperary retained their provincial crown in 2009, with Curran collecting a second Munster medal following a 4–14 to 2–16 defeat of Waterford.[15] On 6 September 2009 Tipperary faced four-in-a-row hopefuls Kilkenny in the All-Ireland decider. For long periods Tipp looked the likely winners, however, late goals from Henry Shefflin and substitute Martin Comerford finally killed off their efforts to secure a 2–22 to 0–23 victory.[16]

Three successive Munster titles proved beyond Tipperary, however, in spite of a shock defeat by Cork in the provincial quarter-final, Tipperary used the qualifiers to good effect and qualified for the All-Ireland decider on 5 September 2010. Kilkenny were the opponents once again as they sought a fifth successive All-Ireland crown title. "The Cats" lost talisman Henry Shefflin early in the game due to injury, while Tipp's Lar Corbett ran riot and scored a hat-trick of goals before Noel McGrath added a fourth. The 4–17 to 1–18 victory gave Curran his first All-Ireland medal on the field of play.[17] He later won a first All-Star.[18]

Tipperary reclaimed the provincial crown in 2011 following a huge 7–19 to 0–19 drubbing of Waterford in the decider.[19] It was Curran's third Munster medal. Tipperary subsequently faced Kilkenny in a third successive All-Ireland decider on 4 September 2011. Goals by Michael Fennelly and Richie Hogan in either half gave Kilkenny, who many viewed as the underdogs going into the game, a 2–17 to 1–16 victory.[20] In spite of this defeat Curran later collected a second successive All-Star.

Curran was appointed captain of the team in 2012 as Tipperary won their fourth Munster crown in five years.[21] The 2–17 to 0–16 defeat of Waterford gave Curran a fourth provincial winners' medal.

Pádraic Maher replaced Curran as Tipperary's first-choice full-back in 2014, with the latter being dropped to the bench. He played no part during the championship campaign which eventually saw Tipperary face an All-Ireland final draw and subsequent defeat by old rivals Kilkenny.[22][23]

On 30 April 2015 it was revealed that Curran had been released from the Tipperary panel. He announced his retirement from inter-county hurling the next day.[24]

Inter-provincial[edit]

Curran also had the honour of lining out for Munster in the Inter-provincial Championship on a number of occasions. He secured a winners' medal in this competition in 2005 following a 1–21 to 2–14 defeat of Leinster.

Honours[edit]

Team[edit]

Mullinahone
Tipperary
Munster

Individual[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Profile: Paul Curran". Tipprary GAA website. Retrieved 30 April 2015. 
  2. ^ "Paul Curran among those trimmed from Tipperary hurling squad". Irish Times. 30 April 2015. Retrieved 30 April 2015. 
  3. ^ "Paul Curran released from Tipperary squad". RTÉ website. 30 April 2015. Retrieved 30 April 2015. 
  4. ^ "Curran cut from Tipp panel". Hogan Stand. 30 April 2015. Retrieved 30 April 2015. 
  5. ^ "After 15 years as a Tipperary senior hurler, Paul Curran calls it a day". The 42. 1 May 2015. Retrieved 1 May 2015. 
  6. ^ "Tributes for 'top class' Paul Curran after retirement decision". Irish Examiner. 1 May 2015. Retrieved 2 May 2015. 
  7. ^ "Tipperary's Paul Curran retires from inter-county hurling". Irish Times. 1 May 2015. Retrieved 2 May 2015. 
  8. ^ "Kelly underlines his class in Mullinahone's fairytale win". Irish Independent. 11 November 2002. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  9. ^ "Tipp beat Clare in league final". Breaking News. 6 May 2001. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  10. ^ Breheny, Martin (2 July 2001). "Tipp's grace under pressure produces late victory flourish". Irish Independent. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  11. ^ Breheny, Martin (10 September 2001). "All-Ireland final: Tipperary 2–18; Galway 2–15". Irish Independent. Retrieved 19 January 2014. 
  12. ^ "Tipp demolish Offaly challenge". Breaking News. 13 July 2002. Retrieved 19 January 2014. 
  13. ^ O'Sullivan, Jim (21 April 2008). "Corbett's cracker tips balance". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  14. ^ Breheny, Martin (14 July 2008). "Tipperary lay down marker for Kilkenny". Irish Independent. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  15. ^ "Defensive errors cost Deise dear as Tipperary retain crown". Munster Express. 17 July 2009. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  16. ^ O'Flynn, Diarmuid (7 September 2009). "Where there's an iron will, there's a way". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 14 May 2013. 
  17. ^ O'Flynn, Diarmuid (6 September 2010). "Thunder and lightning final". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 14 May 2013. 
  18. ^ "Tipp claim six 2010 GAA Hurling All Stars". GAA website. 15 October 2010. Retrieved 26 November 2014. 
  19. ^ O'Flynn, Diarmuid (11 July 2011). "Waterford floored by Premier haymakers". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 14 May 2013. 
  20. ^ O'Flynn, Diarmuid (5 September 2011). "The greatest of champions reclaim crown". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 14 May 2013. 
  21. ^ O'Flynn, Diarmuid (16 July 2012). "Déise restore some pride in Páirc". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 14 May 2013. 
  22. ^ "Kilkenny and Tipp finish level in classic final". RTÉ Sport. 8 September 2014. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  23. ^ "Kilkenny too strong for Tipperary in All-Ireland final replay". RTÉ Sport. 27 September 2014. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  24. ^ "Paul Curran announces end of Tipperary career". RTE Sport. 1 May 2015. Retrieved 1 May 2015.