Song For Christy Ring


Come gather round me boys tonight and raise your glasses high
Come Rockies, Barrs and Rovers stars, let welcome hit the sky
Let bonfires blaze in heroes praise, let Shannon echoes fling
For homeward bound with hurling crown comes gallant Christy Ring

So all you hurlers from the Nore, you lads from Corrib’s side
From Garryowen gay and bold with Tipp’s own men beside
You may have hurlers straight and tall who can a caman swing
But whose the name can play the game with Cork’s own Christy Ring

When we were young we read in school in the days of old
The young Setanta showed his worth with shield and spear of gold
As hurling hard on royal sward, he’d hurling heroes fling
My soul today, he’d yield the sway if he met Christy Ring

A heal to faithful Wexford boys, to the Rackards and their team
Should Cork surrender Ireland’s crown, may victory on them gleam
John Kelly’s name we hold in fame – of ’98 we sing
But Slaney’s plan must find a man to equal Christy Ring

How oft I’ve watched him from the Hill move here and there in grace
In Cork, Killarney, Thurles town or by the Shannon’s race
‘Now Cork is bet; the hay is saved’ the thousands wildly sing
They speak too soon, my sweet garsun, for here comes Christy Ring

When age has gained this warior brave, when ended is the fight
And o’er the hearth he hangs at last, his stick and trophies bright
Come counties all both great and small who boast a hurling King
Can one tonight hold candlelight to Cork’s own Christy Ring?


Written by Brian McNamara to the air of Old Skibbereen.

Christy Ring (12 October 1920 – 2 March 1979) was born in Cloyne, County Cork. He played inter-county minor hurling for Cork when he was sixteen and joined the senior squad three years later in the 1939-40 National Hurling League. He continued to play on the senior county team for the next twenty-four years, during which time he won eight All-Ireland medals, nine Munster medals and three National Hurling League medals. At club level, he won thirteen championship medals with Glen Rovers. Ring is widely regarded as one of the greatest hurlers in the history of the game, with many former players, commentators and fans rating him as the number one player of all-time.

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