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Philly McMahon says wife's pregnancy was 'big decider' for GAA retirement

The 34-year-old announced last month that he was calling time on his football career.
Philly McMahon

Philly McMahon

Neasa Cumiskey

Dublin GAA star Philly McMahon has revealed that his wife’s pregnancy was a deciding factor in his choice to retire from inter-county football.

The 34-year-old announced last month that he was calling time on his football career.

Explaining his reasons for retiring on Ireland AM, the Ballymun native said that it felt like the right time to retire with a baby on the way.

“My wife Sarah is a due a baby in two weeks, so that was the big decider for me,” he said.

“I'm very lucky. I play a sport that I love and I started off as a hobby but your wife or your partner is the one that basically makes all the sacrifices.”

Continuing, the eight-time All-Ireland winner said that he wanted to “pass the jersey on.”

“Playing 14 years is a long stint. You see the lovely clips of running up and down Croke Park but the amount of hours you have to put in behind the scenes and the pain and suffering of training every winter, going back and having to do that to get to the stage where you can life the Sam Maguire eventually takes a toll on your body physically.

“And also, you have to pass the jersey on eventually. You have to make sure that somebody else gets a shot at the blue jersey.

“So, all of those variables definitely had an impact on the decision to hang up my boots,” he added.

McMahon joined team-mates Kevin McManamon, Cian O'Sullivan, Michael Darragh Macauley and Paddy Andrews who all announced their retirements last year.

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Paying tribute to his sporting career with a photo of him dressed in blue and holding up the prestigious Sam Maguire, Philly said: “Dublin. My friend. My home. Mentioned 50 times in this poem. We live in you, My city, mo chroi, I love you, most of the time, you see.... Dublin you are, me - Stephen James Smith.

“Thank you to everyone that was apart of my journey. It's time to pass the jersey on.”

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