Brolly – Tribute to a retired Derry legend
ENDA Muldoon announced his retirement from county football last week. It was fitting that the occasion was a match at Shamrock Park commemorating Ballinderry’s great All-Ireland triumph of 2002.
“I’ll still kick a bit for the club,” he said, smiling. I rang him when I heard the news and thanked him for the memories.
“1-7 from play against Down in the Ulster minor final in 1995,” I reminded him. “I was centre half forward that day too” he said. “That was good going,” I said, “it must be a record.”
“I suppose it was good going,” he said, totally seriously. The Maurice Fitz of the North may have had the body of a stork, but he played like a god. A truly brilliant Gaelic footballer, it was his misfortune and mine that he was born ten years too late. Otherwise Derry’s one-in-a row team of 93 would surely have added a few more.
In 1995, he led that Derry minor team to the Ulster title, scoring that astonishing 1-7 against Down in the final. In the semi-final, he poached a superb goal in injury time to beat Galway by a point.
They lost the final, but the big man was on his way. Two years later, he lead the u-21s to the All-Ireland title. In 2002 he was the country’s club footballer of the year when his magic brought the All-Ireland to Ballinderry.
Read the full story in the current issue of Gaelic Life, published March 22. Buy your copy in your local newsagent or online by clicking the subscribe button