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Tributes paid after Cork All-Ireland winner Seanie O'Leary passes away

Seanie O’Leary won four All-Ireland senior medals as a Cork hurler.

Cork hurling great Seanie O'Leary.
Cork hurling great Seanie O'Leary.
Image: INPHO

TRIBUTES HAVE BEEN paid after the passing of Cork hurling great Seanie O’Leary, a four-time All-Ireland senior winner with the county.

The Youghal club man was aged 69.

O’Leary was part of four All-Ireland senior hurling final wins, starting corner-forward in the three-in-a-row success between 1976-78, and the centenary victory in 1984.

His underage career saw him claim All-Ireland minor hurling medals in 1969 and 1970, while he also enjoyed U21 glory when Cork won the finals in 1971 and 1973.

O’Leary was noted as a brilliant goalscoring forward, particularly in 1984 when he found the net for a match-winning score in the Munster final against Tipperary and then when he hit two goals in the All-Ireland decider against Offaly.

He was selected at left corner-forward on the All-Star hurling team on three occasions after his exploits in 1976, 1977 and 1984. His senior playing days also yielded nine Munster medals and four National League accolades.

After his playing career concluded, he was involved in coaching. He steered the divisional team Imokilly to Cork senior hurling success with their final wins in 1997 and 1998.

After that O’Leary was a selector alongside Jimmy Barry-Murphy when Cork lifted the Liam MacCarthy Cup in 1999 and assisted Donal O’Grady when he was in charge for the 2004 triumph.

His son Tomás O’Leary hurled for the Erins Own club and then captained Cork to win the All-Ireland minor final in 2001. Subsequently Tomás embarked on a successful rugby career as a scrum-half, with Munster winning the Heineken Cup in 2008 and with Ireland winning the Grand Slam in 2009.

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Fintan O'Toole

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