He may have been wearing the wounds of battle after last Sunday’s final but having helped his side claim the Connacht Gold Senior Championship, it was going to take more than a few scrapes to wipe the smile off man of the match Paul Brennan’s face.
Asked how he was feeling, Paul declared “I’ve never felt better to be honest with you. There’s no other feeling like it, coming in to the last minute or two knowing you’re six points up, it was one of the best feelings I’ve ever had in my life.”
As expected, there was little between the teams in a fiercely competitive game and paying tribute to Glencar/Manorhamilton, Paul said “It was the toughest game we’ve played all year. The two of us are very strong, physical teams and we love taking clips off each other.
“This time we came out the better but Manor have to be given nothing but credit for what they’ve done. A four in a row is practically unheard of in any county, they are a fantastic bunch of players but there time was up and we came strong.”
“If you let Manor play football, they will play you off the field. We knew we had to shut them down, if they got on the ball for any more than two or three seconds they would put the ball over the bar.
“We tried to minimise their possession, minimise their inside forwards and tactically it paid off that bit more for us today.”
Reflecting on what has been an incredible 12 months for the Kinlough club, Paul insisted the foundations were last Sunday’s success were laid two years when they suffered the bitter disappointment of relegation.
“We got the kick in the arse we needed two years ago when we went down to Intermediate, but we bounced back and two cups in the space of 12 months isn’t bad. Before we were relegated we were reaching semi-finals and quarter finals but we could never just click and then Billy came and installed the ruthlessness and pure ignorance to win.
“It’s been brilliant the last two years, we couldn’t have asked for any better.”
Paul’s outstanding individual performance was rewarded with the man of the match award but he stressed several of his team mates could just have easily have been presented with that award.
“To be honest you could have given the man of the match award to any one of us. B.B. (Brendan Brennan), Peter McGowan, Emlyn Mulligan and a few of the backs. I got it in the end and I’ll take it on behalf of the players not just myself.”
With winning the title comes the bonus of representing Leitrim in Connacht and Paul is hoping to make up the disappointment of last year.
“We were very disappointed last year because we knew we had the beating of Davitts last year but things didn’t go our way and Davitts got the lucky goal and we couldn’t get it back. Maybe this year we could be the first Leitrim team to win a Connacht Club Championship.”