More Mahonys on their way as younger brothers take on the mantle in Ballygunner 2 weeks ago

More Mahonys on their way as younger brothers take on the mantle in Ballygunner

When Philip Mahony retired from inter-county hurling last year, there was widespread regret around Waterford.

Just 28 years of age at the time, the nagging feeling was that despite injury - and he'd suffered his fair share over a distinguished inter-county career - that he still had more to offer.

A double leg fracture and a dislocated ankle in 2014. It would have broken a lesser man but Mahony, he bounced back and was an All-Star nominee for the next three years in a row.

Ironically, his younger brother Pauric was subject to the same fate the following year when he suffered a horrific leg fracture in a club game in 2015 but just like his predecessor, Pauric came back stronger and hungrier.

18 November 2018; Ballygunner supporter Pat O'Sullivan celebrates with his grandsons Mikey Mahony, Tadhg Foley, Philip Mahony, Pauric Mahony, and Barry O'Sullivan after Ballygunner won the Munster club championship.

A cruel second leg break in the 2019 championship may have been the final straw for Philip but hurling folk in Waterford can now comfort themselves in the knowledge that there are two players of similar ilk on the rise in the county. Players cut from the same cloth and made with the same stuff.

Mikey and Kevin are on their way, the youngest Mahony brothers. The pair have been key members of Waterford minor and under-20 teams respectively in recent seasons and they're standing out at the senior grade for Ballygunnner now.

Mikey has a breath-taking burst of speed and lined out at midfield for the Waterford under-21s in 2018. Kevin meanwhile, was full forward on the county minor team that year.

Watch the pair combine for a goal in Sunday's county final win over Passage and you'll see what the fuss is about.

"The two lads, Kevin in particular has really developed himself physically over the lockdown," said Philip in an interview with Colm Parkinson on The GAA Hour on Monday.

"He's very diligent in terms of his preparation. Earlier in the year we were playing challenge games and we actually weren't going too well and Kevin was probably the standout player for us. In the quarter and semi, he wasn't as good as he was yesterday but it was great to see him and the likes of Paddy Leevy, Tadhg Foley and all them younger lads driving it on!"

Four brothers on the one team is some going for this remarkable hurling family, while their sister Emily played in an All-Ireland final with Gailltír last year. Philip assures us that there are no more young Mahonys on their way, but what prospects these lads are.

You can listen to the full Philip Mahony interview here and much more from Monday's GAA Hour show.