"There were some tough battles but I was happy to test myself against the best" 8 months ago

"There were some tough battles but I was happy to test myself against the best"

6 Munster titles, 1 All-Ireland, 1 All-Star and a National Football League - it's fair to say that it wasn't a bad innings for Kerry's recently retired defender Shane Enright.

2016 was the Tarbert club-man's individual peak, when he was named at right corner back on the year's All-Star team. Overall he looks back on his nine year career with fondness and pride, having tussled with some of the game's best forwards though he admits that his final season in green and gold ended in 'frustration.'


"I probably could have stayed in the plans another year if I chose to," he says in a GAA Hour interview with Colm Parkinson.

"I suppose it was a bit frustrating, in the League I played four out of the five games at centre back and played well enough. But I suppose after the lock-down, it was six months on. I thought I was still going okay but never saw any game-time in the two league games or in the championship after. So that's a bit frustrating and I'm 33 next year so you're kind of thinking 'if I'm not getting game-time now, where am I going?'

"With all you put into it, gym-work and things like that, if you're putting so much into it and not getting as much out of it, it was time to go for me."

Coming out of the lock-down, Enright had high hopes for the season having been told by Kerry manager Peter Keane that he was going to be used in a less familiar role in the half back line. However, he was soon out of favour and that contributed to his decision to call it a ay.

"I didn't hear too much. Look it, Peter Crowley came back from injury too and he was started and that was the position I was playing. I didn't get too much feedback on it, I don't know what the reason was. After playing well in the half back line in the League, I was hoping that I'd nail down that spot. But then coming back after the lock-down I was back in the full back line again which was a funny one. It kind of made me question where I was going a small bit."

The full back line was where he earned a reputation for himself as one of the game's tightest man-markers and just like his fellow county man Marc Ó Sé, Enright admits that Mayo's Andy Moran was the toughest player he's ever had to mark, with Moran taking him for 2-6 over the course of two games.


"I enjoyed it. There were some tough battles down through the years but you were testing yourself against the best which is a good thing. I would have marked Conor McManus, players like Andy Moran, Michael Murphy and Paul Mannions and all these guys. There were some great players and I was happy enough to test myself against the best.

"For myself personally, it was Andy Moran. Maybe it was just a bit that I was off or he was on, but he was brilliant that year. To be honest, the couple of days I was on him, I couldn't get near him. He was gone the minute he got the ball but he was cute too. He was a veteran by that stage and he knew how to give you a shoulder off the ball and he'd leave you that couple of yards. He was very good. McManus was very good. You could mark him for sixty minutes and then he could drift out and score from anywhere."

For Enright, it's out to the golf course now. He'll play club football too and a bit of soccer. No rest for the wicked.

You can listen to the Shane Enright and much more from Thursday's GAA Hour Show here.