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Shane Lowry Says Offaly Still Have Work To Do Despite Massive Progress

Shane Lowry Says Offaly Still Have Work To Do Despite Massive Progress
By Gary Connaughton

Shane Lowry is a world class golfer, but as we all know, his sporting interests extend well beyond his profession of choice.

His love for Offaly GAA has been well established, with the Clara native having been a staunch supporter of the county in both codes since his younger days. His commitments in golf mean that he probably doesn't get to attend as many games as he would like, including last weekend.

While Offaly were taking on Tipperary in the All-Ireland minor hurling final, Lowry was taking part in the third round of the Irish Open at Mount Juliet. That isn't to say he wasn't aware of events at Nowlan Park. In fact, he had a special celebration planned if his native county managed to win the competition for the first time since 1989.

Even though his attendance at such fixtures is limited, he has found other ways to contribute.

7th July 2022: Shane Lowry pictured at the launch of his ambassadorship with Jameson, at Jameson Distillery, Bow St, Dublin. Two living legends, Shane Lowry and Jameson, are coming together for a three-year global ambassadorship.

Shane Lowry thrilled with Offaly progress

It is probably no coincidence that Offaly's resurgence at underage level has coincided with Shane Lowry becoming involved with the county's financing.

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He has partnered with the county board, both committing his own money and helping them to raise funds from other sources. Michael Duignan recently explained how their partnership works, with teams in both codes set to benefit greatly in the years ahead.

As for their fortunes on the pitch, Offaly are now improving at quite a pace having previously spent a number of years in the doldrums. Their appearance in this minor hurling final follows on from their triumph in the All-Ireland U20 football final last year, hinting at a strong future in both the big and small ball.

Speaking in his new role as global ambassador for Jameson, Lowry said that while he would have loved to attend last weekend's final, he would have found the dramatic way in which they lost the game difficult to stomach. He also admitted that while huge progress has been made in the county, everyone knows that their work is nowhere near done.

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I would have liked to have gone to it, but I would have been as disappointed as everyone else leaving it. It was a hard one to take, I found out when I was on the course at Mount Juliet.

I was chatting to Michael Duignan and a few of the lads over the last few days, it's been a tough one for them to take. You just have to get over things like that. That's sport and that's how it goes sometimes.

We've got a good group of young lads now and hopefully we can build something around them for the future...

Like everyone I know that there is a long way to go, but they are definitely steps in the right direction. It just goes to show the work they've put in, even over the last three or four years is starting to pay off a little bit.

Even we can get everyone to keep working and keep pulling in the same direction going forward, hopefully we can get back to competing at the highest level.

Offaly will be hoping to see their success at underage level transfer to the senior ranks, although that is likely to be a longer process. In saying that, they were in the top two divisions in both hurling and football in 2022.

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It will be some time before this partnership fully bears fruit, although having a world class athlete like Shane Lowry on board can only be a good thing for Offaly GAA.

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Jameson is proud to announce Irish professional golfer Shane Lowry as their newest brand ambassador. Two living legends, Shane Lowry and Jameson, are coming together for a three-year global ambassadorship. To find out more about Jameson visit www.jamesonwhiskey.com/en-ie/. Follow the conversation on social #WidenTheCircle @jamesonwhiskey.   

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SEE ALSO: Shane Lowry Is Already Eyeing A Unique Irish Golfing Hat-Trick In 2027

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