McKeon looking to cement his place in Boden team

By Daire Walsh

WITH a full year of competitive hurling now under his belt, Ballyboden St Enda’s star Conor McKeon is hoping to scale greater heights in 2021.

After announcing his retirement from professional rugby in the summer of 2019, following a five-year stint at Connacht, McKeon returned to the club he had previously lined out for as a juvenile.

Conor McKeon 1

Conor McKeon

He found it hard to nail down a regular starting place during ‘Boden’s march to the Dublin Senior Hurling Championship decider in recent months and this is something the 26-year-old is looking to address.

“Last year I kind of came back halfway through a year. I was happy to get in and even play a few games at that level.

“This year I came on a bit more. Started a few big games and missed out on the knockout stages, which I can’t lie, was very disappointing because you feel like you could make a difference..

“To nail down a starting spot with Ballyboden [is the goal] and I saw I was well able this year. It’s probably about finding that consistency and just getting as much hurling as I can.”

Despite making the difficult decision to concentrate solely on rugby when he was 17, McKeon always envisaged a return to the small ball code at some point.

Thanks to the influence of ‘Boden stalwart Ray McKenna, he fell in love with the sport as a youngster and the past 18 months has seen this passion reignited.

“Seeing how passionate he was about it and how much love he had for it. For a sports mad kid like myself, I think he definitely rubbed that off on me. I think that’s why I always had the passion for the game and wanted to come back so badly.”

While McKeon only managed four appearances in the Connacht first-team before injury took its toll, he looks back with immense pride on his time in the professional game.

“I think it was unbelievable to get to be a professional for that amount of time and to be able to live a life where you woke up in the morning and a gym session was your first appointment of the day. It was unbelievable to get to train at that level and get to be exposed to all brilliant coaches,” McKeon remarked.

“To play with the likes of Bundee Aki and all these guys, you’d bite your hand off to do it. How it finished was disappointing, but I gave it everything. I left no stone unturned. It was an unbeli-evable thing to say that I’ve been able to have done” he said.

By subscribing to The Echo you are supporting your local newspaper Click Here: Echo Online.

Prev Dowling on days of national dominance and great Euro and Olympic adventures
Next Echo Sport Replay: Kelly- a true great of Irish cycling in a time of war and fierce political divide

  • Bus with no passengers or driver ends up in bush in Square Shopping Centre
  • Isaac from Kilnamanagh was presented with a Garda hat from the Community Policing Unit in Tallaght
  • Ducks spotted skating in Tymon Park
  • Exchange Hall fire
  • Thanks for all of your support this year

We use cookies to improve your experience on our site, personalise content, provide social media features, analyse our traffic, show you relevant advertising and to target and report on ads. By using the site, you consent to the use of cookies that may process personal data for these purposes.