By Daire Walsh
Just a few short weeks after announcing his retirement from inter-county hurling, Cork’s Anthony Nash finds himself back in the headlines.
According to various reports that circulated on Monday evening, the 36-year-old is set to transfer from his home club of Kanturk to Limerick outfit, South Liberties.
In doing so, he will link-up with his first cousin Barry Nash, who recently starred for the Treaty County at left corner-back in their emphatic All-Ireland SHC final success at the expense of Waterford. Anthony’s uncles Declan and Mike (Barry’s father) are also members of the club and represented Limerick themselves in the past.
Mike starred at full-back in the county’s All-Ireland final defeats to Offaly and Wexford in 1994 and 1996 respectively. Declan lined out at left half-back in the ’94 decider, before assuming his nephew’s current position two years later.
The Leeside Nash’s proposed move has already been given the go-ahead by the Limerick County Board and now awaits the seal of approval from the Munster Council. It may be some time before he can make his official South Liberties debut, but he will be eager to start a new chapter in his hurling career.
At inter-county level, Nash had the misfortune of joining the Cork senior panel in the months that followed their most recent All-Ireland triumph in 2005. He was a non-playing substitute on the Rebels’ Oireachtas Cup-winning side on October 31 of the same year, a mere 50 days after the Munster men had defeated Galway in a Liam McCarthy Cup showpiece.
Over the course of the next 15 years, he won four Munster senior titles, but missed out on an All-Ireland glory in both 2006 and 2013. Having been back-up Donal Óg Cusack in his first season on the championship panel, he was between the sticks for the two-game saga against eventual champions Clare seven years later – rattling the Banner County net in both encounters.
He did win an All-Ireland minor crown with Cork in 2001, however, and had added an impressive four All-Ireland intermediate winners’ medals to his collection by the end of the same decade.
A Fitzgibbon Cup champion with UCC in 2009, he has enjoyed considerable success with Kanturk in recent years. After helping his club to secure a Cork Junior Football Championship in 2011, he was the captain for their Intermediate Hurling Championship win of 2013.
He was on board as Kanturk annexed a Cork Premier IHC crown in 2017, with Munster and All-Ireland intermediate titles following in the same season. In the latter, he converted two long-range frees to squeeze the green and white past St Patrick’s, Ballyragget of Kilkenny.
Considering his age profile, Nash’s transfer to South Liberties will come as something of a surprise to many.
In this year’s Limerick county championship, Liberties reached the quarter-final stage, where they suffered a 3-20 to 2-12 defeat at the hands of Doon. Barry Nash has a more advanced role at club level and contributed 3-5 in their comprehensive group stage win over Murroe-Boher.
Reaching the last-eight was a marked improvement on the previous year’s competition, when South Liberties suffered five straight reversals at the group phase.
With a high-profile recruit joining their ranks, they will aim to go a couple of steps further in 2021.