Rebel legend Graham Canty calls time on Cork career
Following in the footsteps recently taken by Noel O’Leary and Paudie Kissane, Cork legend Graham Canty has decided to retire from inter-county football.
Given the length of time he’s been involved with Cork and the service he’s given to the county, it’s hard to believe that the Bantry Blues clubman is still only 32 years old, but he has decided to hang up his inter-county boots after 13 years with the Rebels and will now focus on club football for the rest of his playing days.
Commenting on the decision to retire, Canty told the Irish Examiner: “I’ve been involved since 2000, so I’ve had a good run at it.
“There are no regrets, certainly. I’m glad to be finishing up with Cork while the body is in good enough nick. I’ll be continuing with the club, 100%. When you’re playing inter-county, you don’t train with your club, realistically, so I’ll be glad to fall back in with the lads in Bantry again.
“It was a great honour to play for Cork, and to captain Cork, obviously, but it was also hugely enjoyable. I was very lucky to have such great support from family, from my club, from the various management teams, all of which allowed me to play for Cork.
“Did I think I’d still be playing football for Cork in 2013, when I started off back in 2000? I’d have been happy if you’d told me I’d still be playing football, full stop.”
A very versatile performer, Canty played in the full-back line, the half back line and in midfield throughout his career with Cork and given his natural leadership qualities, he was always likely to captain the side at some stage and did so from 2008 onwards.
The highlight of his career was undoubtedly leading the Rebels to the All-Ireland title in 2010, but he also appeared in two more All-Ireland finals – both of which ended in defeat to arch-rivals Kerry - he won four Munster titles, three Division One National League titles, a Division Two title and three All-Star awards.
Canty was also a prominent member of the Ireland International Rules team throughout the 2000s and was vice-captain of the side in 2008.
With O’Leary, Kissane and Canty now all retired, new Rebels manager Brian Cuthbert will have some job assembling a new-half back line for next season and some job selecting a leader to assume the captaincy in Canty’s absence.
Undoubtedly one of the leading footballers in the country over the last decade or so and a popular man to boot, Canty will be missed next season and beyond.
We wish him all the best in his retirement.