When Dom Corrigan laced up the boots as an 11 year old cub, making his Kinawley debut on the under 14 team that played Erne Gaels, he found himself in nets.
On that sunny Saturday morning, back in 1973, the then under 14 manager, Fr Gaffney, gave Corrigan the number one shirt but his performance between the sticks didn’t earn him many plaudits that day, after, in his own words “the goals rained past me from all angles.”
Almost half a century later and that defeat still stands out in Corrigan’s memory but his career on and off the pitch certainly took an upward turn and now the Springtown man is coming back home to take charge of the Kinawley senior team.
Word of Corrigan’s decision to take on the Brian Boru’s came as somewhat of a surprise to many but for the man himself, asked if he always saw himself coming back to Kinawley? He quickly responds, “aw I did, yeah.”
“When Sean Doonan (Club Chairman) told me the manager’s position was available and asked would I be happy to go for it, I felt it was something I was going to do at some stage and I suppose now is as good a time as any.”
Reflecting on the response he has had around the club, he says;
“There’s great positivity, the people in Kinawley are great people, they are the people I was born and reared with, obviously they’re delighted to see one of their own come in and manage them going forward this year and I’m delighted to be taking them on.
“The old saying, there’s no place like home and I’m looking forward to getting back out to Kinawley and working on the pitch with a great group of players.
“We will work hard and see where it gets us and enjoy the journey irrespective of what the outcome is and that’s the one thing about me as a coach and manager, I certainly want players in my environment to feel it’s a happy place to be, they want to be there, not forced to be there, that they’re enjoying it and when they’re enjoying it they’re improving as well.”
Corrigan has nothing left to prove as a manager, he has brought championship success to five different clubs, in three different counties, winning a total of seven senior county titles.
He has won with Monaghan sides Castleblayney and Clontibret, Tyrone’s Carrickmacross and Killyclogher and most recently, managing Ballinamore to their first Senior Championship since 1990 a couple of months ago. Throw into the mix his success with St Michael’s College at MacRory and Hogan Cup level and you can see why there’s a bit of a buzz around Patrick McManus Memorial Park.
Corrigan moved to Enniskillen to live in 1987 but his two sons, Tomás and Ruáirí are true blues, a testament to the club, says their father, who took them out the road for under 8 training and embedded them in the community there.
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