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Life of Brian – Lohan lauded in new book

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*Clare manager Brian Lohan in Wexford Park. Pic: Jim Campbell Photography

John Scally has penned a brand-new GAA sports book, providing a glimpse into the life of Clare Senior Hurling Manager Brian Lohan.

Ruan legend, Jimmy Smyth is also detailed in the book by John. Smyth is labelled as “one of the greatest hurlers of all time, with a unique expertise in the folklore of the GAA”.

The Dublin based, former-journalist turned teacher provides a profile of Brian Lohan, admitting, “I have no hesitation in saying that he was the greatest full-back I have ever seen”.

Captivated by the current Clare manager, John informs that he decided to look into his life after coming across a famous hurling marketing campaign from the 1990s, adorning the slogan: Not Men But Giants.

“To me the man who most encapsulates this phrase is Brian Lohan. There was no more thrilling sight in hurling than seeing Brian charging up the field in his iconic red helmet. To sum him up in three words is easy: Simply the Best,” John stated.

The Peoples Games: A GAA Compendium is laden with fascinating anecdotes, information and entertainment. It is available to purchase in all bookshops and online on Amazon.

Here is a snippet:

The Life of Brian:
Brian Lohan

Brian Lohan should have been called the Postman.

He always delivered for Clare.

He led by his actions and raised the standards of everyone else.

In the 1990s a drinks company sponsored an advertising campaign promoting the game of hurling under the slogan ‘Not Men But Giants.’ To me the man that embodied this idea more than any other was Clare’s full-back at the time Brian Lohan. It was a time when rumours of the savage intensity of what went on inside the high walls of Clare training sessions had been common currency. Has there ever been a more iconic artefact than Lohan’s red helmet as he thundered up the field yet again to turn defence into attack and whip the Banner brigade in the stands into a frenzy? Has there ever been a more inspirational full-back? Was there ever a better full-back?

In 2001 Ger Loughnane predicted that Brian Lohan would go on to manage Clare. In 2019, after a controversial and sometimes turbulent process, he was appointed Clare manager. His first major test as a manager came in the League away to Wexford, managed by his former teammate Davy Fitzgerald. The media went into a frenzy beforehand about whether both men would publicly shake hands afterwards given the high profile spat between them. There was no grand reconciliation.

Whatever Lohan achieves as an intercounty manager his place in the annals of Clare hurling is secured because of his achievements as a player: full-back on the All-Ireland winning teams of 1995 and ’97.

An avid reader from a young age, Cian’s love of the archives has been shared by Clare Echo readers who enjoy his Reeling in The Years section. Charles Dickens, Terry Pratchett and Michael Crichton were his favourites writers in his younger years while he was always a fan of studying the opinion columns in The Irish Independent. A past pupil of Lissycasey National School and St Flannan’s College, he is currently completing his final year studies at the University of Limerick in New Media and English. From September, he will be commencing a Masters Degree in Journalism at UL.

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