Sports

Gavin calls time on stellar Inter County refereeing career

Thursday, 18 January 2018

Offaly's Brian Gavin has decided to retire from Inter County refereeing with immediate effect. His announcement came last week as the 40 year brought the curtain down on a career in which he refereed four All Ireland Senior hurling finals.
His four All Ireland's came in the space of six years with the 2016 decider between Kilkenny and Tipperary being one of his finest hours with no yellow or red cards shown.
His retirement comes as a bit of a shock but speaking to GAA.ie last week he explained that he has no regrets.
"I'll definitely miss it, there's no doubt, but I just feel I've come to the right decision.
"It's getting harder every year. Even though I'm only 40 I'm still 20 years older than some of the players, so it's getting tougher and tougher.
"I really enjoyed my time, I had four All-Ireland Finals and four Munster Finals. I'd probably say now I would have liked to get five All-Irelands, but when I started off I would have been thrilled with even one, never mind four. So, I definitely have no regrets."
Gavin was all set to throw in his lot for 2018 but decided last week that the time was right to step away. To his credit and indeed to the credit of the men themselves, he has said the same four umpires right throughout his Inter County career with Father Michael, brother David, Clara's William 'Banjo' Gavin and Ferbane's PJ Lawlor.
Speaking last week, the current Clara GAA Chairman spoke of about the game and indeed the participants becoming faster over the years and that referees will need a lot of help from Croke Park going forward to ensure standards are maintained and even improved.
Along with the four All Ireland senior finals in 2011, 2013, 2014 (replay) and 2016, he took charge of one All Ireland Minor hurling final, one U21 hurling final, one All Ireland senior club final, one National hurling league final and four Munster finals while taking charge of 38 Senior championship games overall with the first back in 2004 when Antrim took on Derry and his final one last year when Kilkenny and Limerick locked horns.
There will be a feature interview with Brian Gavin in next weeks Tribune looking back on his career along with his thoughts on his time at the top.

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