Sean Delaney

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Sean "Rab" Delaney (1949 – 12 April 2004) was a famous sportsman from County Laois, Ireland.

Aged 55, Sean died suddenly in 2004 and the news stunned the county.[1]

He will always be remembered as the man who guided Laois to the county’s first Ladies All-Ireland senior title in 2001, defeating Mayo. It was an honour he enjoyed, and the highlight of a varied and outstanding sporting career.

Sean was a League of Ireland footballer with Shamrock Rovers, Shelbourne and St. Patrick's Athletic, an inter county goalkeeper and corner forward with Laois seniors, a highly respected senior goalkeeper with Portlaoise hurlers.

Son of the late Morgan and Mai Delaney, Goggie spent his early years in Portlaoise and attended St Mary’s CBS where he won numerous under age titles.

With the Portlaoise hurlers, he won Laois Minor Hurling Championship titles in 1964 and 1965, and at 17 played in the Laois Junior Hurling Championship decider defeating Camross in 1965.

He was in goal for Laois in 1966 All-Ireland Minor Football Championship final, a decider Laois lost to Down.

A noted soccer player, Goggie was a free kick specialist. On his debut for Shamrock Rovers, he scored twice, once from a free kick. He was reputed to have turned to the crowd on scoring the spectacular spot kick and announced "If you want to see another one like that, I’m in Portlaoise next Sunday at 3 o’ clock."

He played the game with confidence, and did likewise between the hurling goalposts. Holder of five SHC medals, Tipperary legend Jimmy Doyle installed Goggie as the number one goalkeeper in the town and Sean was between the posts for the club’s historic four-in-a-row campaign from 1981 to 1984.

Seán was also proud to play some of his hurling career with Park/Ratheniska where he won a Laois Junior Hurling Championship title in 1971 and a Laois Intermediate Hurling Championship in 1977. Goggie famously had a bet on that he would keep a clean sheet in one of the finals and could be heard cursing the heavens when a late consolation goal went in, causing great laughter throughout the team and the ground.

He played senior football with Stradbally, and won a Division One league medal with the club.

At the end of his playing career, he turned to coaching. He was an innovative coach, direct on the one hand yet more than willing to share the concerns and doubts of his players. One of his greatest strengths was involving all on the panel, and being willing to seek outside advice and support for his teams.

He coached football and hurling, camogie and ladies football for various clubs throughout the county with a fair degree of success.

His father Morgan played on the Laois team that won the 1946 Leinster Senior Football Championship title and he really savoured Laois's next Leinster Senior Football Championship win in 2003 as his son Damien lined out on the team which regained the title after a gap of 57 years.

in 2000 Sean Delaney starred in the film There's Only One Jimmy Grimble as the character Brick