BY DENIS HURLEY
RUMOURS of a return to the Cork football fold for Ciarán Sheehan have proven to be just that, as the Farran native has opted to take up a role with the AFL Players’ Association.
The 2010 All-Ireland medallist was home for Christmas in Farran and, with his contract with Carlton not renewed, there was hope among Cork fans that he might be back for good.
However, Sheehan told the42.ie that he will take up a new job while playing Australian Rules for Avondale Heights in the Essendon District Football League.
‘I’m after applying for a job with the AFL Players’ Association and it’s looking likely that’ll be my position for the year ahead,’ he said.
‘It’s an alumni programme co-ordinator, so basically it will involve working with past players and basically outlining the support services that the AFL PA gives to these past players. It’s a player welfare-based role.
‘A big factor is that [his fiancée] Amy had progressed in her career. She had sacrificed a lot to come out with me originally. Now she’s in a really good position career-wise.
‘You have to think about the two of us rather than getting selfish and me coming back home to play GAA. It’s a decision for the two of us.
‘I’m pretty excited about the move back and getting to experience the city from a different view. We both love the country and the lifestyle.’
Sheehan isn’t averse to the idea of coming back at some stage, though.
‘I wouldn’t be ruling out anything GAA-wise down the road,’ he said.
‘I’m just going to see how this year goes in 2018 on and off the pitch. Then we’ll see after that and figure out what we’re going to do.
‘I don’t regret anything from my experience in Australia and deciding to move out there. I’d a lot of injuries alright but I’d some great experiences and got to meet so many great people. There’s been plenty ups and downs but I learned so much from it.’Likewise, new Cork boss Ronan McCarthy has kept the door open for a future return, while admitting that it was not a prospect this time.
‘The word was that he was heading back, in the short term at least,’ he said.
‘It wasn’t something that was broached. Maybe it’s a prospect for further down the line.’