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Everyone Was Amazed By The Toughness Of Bernard Flynn On Laochra Gael

Everyone Was Amazed By The Toughness Of Bernard Flynn On Laochra Gael

Last night's Laochra Gael profiled Meath forward Bernard Flynn, one of the many colourful and entertaining characters who starred on Sean Boylan's famous Meath teams. Flynn is the perfect subject for a Laochra Gael - brash, funny, but steely and brave as well. As gaelic football has evolved into death by 1,000 handpasses, last night's episode made many people nostalgia for the hard-tackling glory days of the game.

Viewers were absolutely amazed by the toughness that Flynn showed on the football pitch. FLynn was often a marked man, but he pushed himself straight through the pain barrier. This shoulder from Martin Gavigan in the 1990 All-Ireland semifinal was the textbook definition of 'bonecrunching': it literally broke a few bones in his chest.

Or how about this loving tackle Flynn receives at the end of this clip from a Dublin defender? It's like watching a different sport being played. Either tackle could be considered a red card by today's standards.

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Flynn proved impossible to keep down though and the programme really captured his indefatigable spirit - both on and off the football pitch. Flynn also spoke honestly about the physical toll the game took on him. A long run of injuries caught up with him on the day of the 1994 @league final.

"I got away with it that day, you didn't another day. I was trying to cod myself a little bit. I was suffering in silence, inside, deeply, I really was. Deep down, I knew I couldn't keep going.

"I was genuinely in agony at that stage. I was taking a lot of painkillers. I was eating tablets non-stop. The knee wasn't quite right. The hip had escalated to a stage where it was getting hard to jog.

"In those days, Sean Boylan did everything he could. Gerry McEntee sat me down and arranged a meeting with Pat O'Neill from Dublin - who subsequently managed Dublin to the All-Ireland [in 1995]. He sat me down and said, 'Bernard, you're in bad shape. Your hip is in a bad, bad way. He said, 'If you don't give up football, you'll be in a wheelchair'."

There was a tonne of love for the Meath corner forward on social media last night.

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Flynn - never the humblest man on the pitch - seemed genuinely chuffed with the huge outpouring of affection.

'Hopefully l got back to everyone of you for all your amazing well wishes, honoured and privileged, l really am,' he tweeted. 

SEE ALSO: Bernard Flynn Paid Heavy Price For Playing Through Pain Barrier

bernard flynn meath injuries laochra gael

Donny Mahoney
Article written by
Donny Mahoney is Chief Sportswriter and one of the founders of Balls.ie

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