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Thursday 8 December 2016

Glory days as Dublin's heroes of 1995 reunited for first time

Sport

Vinny Murphy, Paul Clarke, Charlie Redmond, Mick Deegan and Paul Bealin.
Vinny Murphy, Paul Clarke, Charlie Redmond, Mick Deegan and Paul Bealin.

Dublin's famous All-Ireland football final win of 1995 was relived last night when the legendary team was reunited for the first time in 20 years.

The knife-edge victory over Tyrone was recalled with gusto at a dinner at Castleknock Golf Club as the team members spoke of a remarkable bond that kept the team's dream of victory alive in the final's dying seconds.

Jim Gavin, manager of the 2015 All-Ireland winning Dublin team, took his place among his old team-mates and said lessons learned in that era still bear fruit for the current Dublin team.

"Lessons get learned over a lot of tough games. That team had been beaten in All-Irelands in 1992 and 1994. But the great collective team spirit and mental strength of the team that day brought us over the line," said Gavin, who scored a point in the final.

Charlie Redmond bagged the only goal scored in the final but found himself at the centre of controversy for a long time afterwards when he was ordered off by the referee but continued to play for a short time before finally leaving the pitch.

"I still get a few slags and jeers about it," he said. "It was a miscommunication. The following year they introduced the red card or the Red-mond card.

"That match certainly had highs and lows for me. Nobody ever likes being sent off but I went to bed that night with an All-Ireland medal. Over the years I learned there are far more important things in life than sport," he added.

Now a resident of Ashbourne, he said he is immensely proud that two daughters play under-age camogie in the colours of his old arch-rivals Meath.

Happy

He will never forget his team's four matches against Meath in 1991 when Dublin were beaten by a single point in the third replay between the sides.

Paul Clarke remembered being so happy that he scored what proved to be the winning point in the 1995 final.

The team had no reason to feel any guilt about the referee's decision to penalise Tyrone's Peter Canavan in the crucial dying minutes, he said.

"It's brilliant to be reunited for the first time," Paul said.

Footballer Mick Galvin (52) said it was "euphoria" when they won. "It just doesn't get any better than that. It's great to celebrate being together again.

"Although hats off to this year's winning team, which I believe to be the best team ever to play for Dublin."

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