With the news that five-time All-Ireland winner with Kerry, Tomas O’Sé is transferring from An Ghaeltacht to Cork’s Nemo Rangers, it has once again reminded us that the GAA is changing and that transfers of this kind are becoming more and more frequent.
Recently Limerick footballing great John Galvin began to play his club football in Clare with Cratloe where he helped them to this year’s County title.
With all this in mind, here’s a look at some of the highest profile GAA transfers of the last 25 years.
Larry Tompkins – Kildare to Cork
Born in Kildare, Tompkins’ move to Cork proved to be a hugely successful one. He settled in Castlehaven, County Cork, upon his return from America in 1987 and quickly became involved with the County team.
His first three seasons saw him collect three Munster medals, three All-Stars and one All-Ireland in 1989. In 1990, Tompkins was the captain as Cork retained their All-Ireland crown. In total he claimed six Munster titles with Cork, two All-Irelands, and three All-Stars making his transfer an incredibly fruitful one.
Karl O’Dwyer – Kerry to Kildare
Originally from Waterville, and son of GAA legend, Mick O’Dwyer, Karl enjoyed success with Kildare in the late ’90s. It was 1998 that O’Dwyer and Kildare made their mark on the Championship when they secured their first Leinster title since 1956.
Incidentally, Mick was manager of this Kildare outfit, making it a family affair. They would go on to lose out to Galway in the All-Ireland final that year but Karl would pick up an All-Star for his impressive season. A second Leinster title would follow in 2000.
Ryan O’Dwyer -Tipperary to Dublin (Hurling)
Before his 2011 move to Dublin, O’Dwyer played for Tipperary, where he won a Munster Under-21 Hurling medal in 2006 and a National League title in 2008.
His first season with Dublin saw him claim another league – Dublin’s first since 1939. O’Dwyer was Man of the Match in the final. O’Dwyer’s good form continued, when after Dublin lost the Leinster final to Kilkenny, he scored 3-02 against Limerick in the All-Ireland quarter-final. O’Dwyer’s biggest moment so far for Dublin is winning a Leinster title in 2013.
Seanie Johnston – Cavan to Kildare
The most infamous GAA transfer of all time, Johnston’s move caused controversy as he moved more in the hope of success, rather than the usual work reasons. In a farcical episode, he made an appearance in a club hurling game to become eligible for the County football side.
He made his debut, inevitably against Cavan, in July of 2012 scoring a point. His unsuccessful transfer brought no silverware or starting place and Johnston has returned to Cavan where he won his ninth County title with Cavan Gaels earlier this month.
John Ivory, Pundit Arena.