- Sean Cavanagh
Infobox GAA player | name = Sean Cavanagh
irish =Seán Caomhánach
sport= Gaelic football
icapps(points)=36 [cite news |first=Declan |last=Bogue |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=McGrane set for '60' |work=Gaelic Life |publisher= |date=2008-05-16 |accessdate=2008-05-17 ]
icupdate=15:53, 17 May 2008 (UTC)
Sean Cavanagh (sometimes Seán Cavanagh) is a treble All Star-winning Tyrone
Gaelic footballer. He has won All-Ireland championships for Tyrone at minor, Under 21 and Senior level, and has represented Ireland at the International Rules Series.
His playing style is very attack-minded, considering he is usually deployed as a midfielder, and he usually ends up scoring more than most of the forwards on the team. This is complemented on the team by
Brian Dooher's tireless workrate from the half-forward line - something he is the first to admit. [cite web|url=http://archives.tcm.ie/irishexaminer/2003/09/25/story243198234.asp|title=Tyrone’s trojan is not a talker, he’s a Dooher|accessdate=2007-03-06]
Colm Cavanaghis also a current member of the Tyrone panel. [cite web|url=http://www.rte.ie/sport/2007/0203/tyrone.html|title=Tyrone shine under lights|accessdate=2008-03-14]
Cavanagh graduated from the
University of Ulsterin 2004 with a First Class Honours Degree in Accountancy. [cite web|url=http://news.ulster.ac.uk/releases/2004/1249.html|title=Sean Cavanagh - A First Class Finisher|accessdate=2007-02-27] He has since gone on to follow a career in accountancy.
Cavanagh was an integral part of the Tyrone Minor Team that won the All-Ireland in 2001, [cite web|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/low/northern_ireland/1570614.stm|title=Tyrone win minor title|accessdate=2007-02-04] and then went on to win two Ulster Championships in 2002 and 2003.
He was also enormously successful as school level, winning the Ulster Colleges Championship, the
MacRory Cupin 2000, with Saint Patrick's Grammar School, Armagh, earning himself an Ulster Colleges All Star along the way, having scored the decisive goal in the final.
Cavanagh made his Tyrone Senior debut in 2002, against neighbouring rivals, and eventual All Ireland Champions, Armagh scoring a goal which earned Tyrone a replay. [cite web | url= http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/low/northern_ireland/1997211.stm| title= Cavanagh is Tyrone's saviour| accessdate= 2007-02-04] He was also a member of the squad that won Tyrone's first ever National League campaign.
In 2003, Cavanagh was pivotal in Tyrone's quest to their first ever All-Ireland Championship. He was voted Man-of-the-Match in their first round replay against Derry. [cite web|url =http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/northern_ireland/gaelic_games/2935198.stm| title=Tyrone outclass dismal Derry|accessdate=2007-02-04] He returned from injury to appear in the drawn Ulster Final against Down, and scored a point in the replay (one of Tyrone's twenty three), while commanding midfield. [cite web| url=http://www.downgaa.net/downgaa/football/county/senior/2003/down_v_tyrone_replay_result.htm |title= Down overwhelmed by Tyrone side on fire - 20/07/03] In the All-Ireland Quarter final (the next round), Tyrone beat neighbours Fermanagh 1-21 (24 points) to 0-05. Cavanagh again lead by example from midfield, and scored Tyrone's goal. [cite web|url= http://impartialreporter.com/archive/2003-08-07/news/story6323.html| title=GAA: All-Ireland Quarter Final – Fermanagh 0-05 Tyrone 1-21| accessdate=2007-02-04]
The year ended with Cavanagh winning his first All Star, at the age of twenty, as well as the Young Player of the Year Award [cite web|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/northern_ireland/gaelic_games/3245776.stm|title=Tyrone's magnificent seven|accessdate=2007-02-04]
Tyrone's 2004 campaign was foreshadowed by the untimely death of their newly appointed captain,
Cormac McAnallen. Tyrone were ultimately knocked out of the Championship by eventual finalists, Mayo. Cavanagh won Tyrone's only All Star that year.
In 2005, Cavanagh scored twelve points from midfield over the course of the championship. There was speculation as to whether he would emigrate to
Australiato join a professional AFL team, ( Brisbane Lions), as Tadhg Kennellyhad successfully done a few years prior. [cite web| url= http://www.rte.ie/sport/2005/1012/cavanaghs.html?rss| title= Cavanagh offered two-year deal by Brisbane| accessdate=2007-02-04] However, he declined offers of a contract with Brisbane Lions, saying that he wanted to stay in Ireland and further both his football career and his career as an accountant. He claims that when he travelled to play Australia in 2005, he saw that Australia was a "great" place, but not somewhere he would be happy to settle. [ Sunday Tribune, 5 November 2006, Page 35] [cite web| url= http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/northern_ireland/gaelic_games/4341104.stm |title=C avanagh rejects Brisbane offer| accessdate=2007-02-27]
In the All-Ireland Semi-Final, Tyrone played Armagh for the third time in the Championship. With only a few minutes left, and Tyrone two points down, Cavanagh stepped up and embarked on a surging solo run, and dropping the ball over the bar for a point, inspiring Tyrone to go on to win the match. [cite web| url=http://www.4ni.co.uk/industrynews.asp?ID=43894 | title=Tyrone to meet Kerry in GAA football final | accessdate=2007-02-04]
Cavanagh was again awarded an All-Star, his third in a row - the only Ulsterman to do that apart from
Peter Canavanin the mid 90's, and the first midfielder to do it since Jack O'Sheain the early 80's.
Tyrone's 2006 campaign was plagued by injury from the start, and they were disappointingly knocked out of the championship by Laois.The early exit allowed players to take up 'ringer' positions in American GAA leagues and Cavanagh was one of the players that took up the offer. [cite web| url=http://www.thestar.ie/sports/tyrone_players_head_for_usa.402.224.html| title= Tyrone Players head for USA |accessdate=2007-04-04]
In the 2007 Championship, Cavanagh struck up an effective midfield partnership with Kevin Hughes, and has undertaken some free kick duties in the absence of Tyrone's regular free-takes due to injury. He won his second Ulster Championship in July, when he scored four points in the Ulster Final.In the All-Ireland quarter final, Cavanagh scored a spectacular solo-effort goal against Meath, but was unable to inspire Tyrone to victory and they crashed out of the Championship.
Colm O'Rourke, RTÉ Sport's pundit, remarked about how Cavanagh was able to run faster while controlling the ball, than some players running after him. [Said during the live RTÉ Sunday Game Live coverage of the All-Ireland quarter final. Meath v Tyrone - August 4, 2007]
In the 2008 Championship, Cavanagh picked up his third All Ireland winners medal after Tyrone triumped against Kerry on 21 September 2008. After the game he was named RTÉ Man of the Match for his five point contribution.
Cavanagh has represented Ireland several times in the
International rules footballSeries, and has been chosen to play for them for the 2006 campaign, [cite web|url=http://msnsport.skysports.com/list.aspx?hlid=421466&CPID=614&clid=&lid=3098&title=Boylan+names+training+panel|title=Boylan names training panel|accessdate=2007-02-04] scoring three points for Ireland in the opening test. [cite web |url= http://www.gaa.ie/plugins/newsfeed.cgi?rm=content&plugin_data_id=15618 |title= COCA-COLA INTERNATIONAL RULES 1ST TEST| accessdate= 2007-02-04] Gaelic Players Associationcontroversy
In February 2007, the Tyrone County Board issued a statement criticizing the actions and ideals of the
Gaelic Players Association(GPA), and urged the GAA in an open letter to not give the GPA officially recognised status. This put the Tyrone players into a difficult situation, as many were active members of the organisation. One of the main opponents of the county board's position was Sean Cavanagh, and has since gone on record defending the actions of the GPA, and criticizing those of the board, stating, "they were not speaking for me or the Tyrone footballers, or the majority of GAA people in this county." [cite web | url= http://www.nwipp-newspapers.com/UH/free/288264386245077.php |title= Steps are taken to heal GPS rift| accessdate= 2007-02-27] [cite web|url= http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/northern_ireland/gaelic_games/6367757.stm| title=Tyrone letter leads to GPA anger| accessdate=2007-02-27] Cavanagh is one of the more visible proponents of the GPA, often starring in advertising campaigns for GPA affiliates, such as Club Energize.
* [http://www.teamtalkmag.com/2003/county/senior-championship/tyrone-player-profiles.htm#Sean%20Cavanagh Short profile prior to Ulster Final replay in 2003]
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