St Patrick's Day Celebration: Six of the best Irish sporting stars
Six Irish Sporting Stars

The whole world celebrates St Patrick's Day and whilst many will dress as leprechauns, drink pints of guinness and attend parades there is a lot more to the emerald isle than just St Patrick.

Gerry Johnston takes a look at six of Ireland's sporting stars.

Carl Frampton (Boxing)

Frampton has just made the first defence of his IBF Super Bantamweight world title with a stoppage win over California's Chris Avalos. Frampton, who is from Belfast, looks to have the boxing world at his feet and will now look for possible unification fights with Scott Quigg, Guillermo Rigondeaux or Leo Santa Cruz.

Henry Sheflin (Hurling)

Sheflin may be reaching the end of his career but the man from Ballyhale, Kilkenny will go down as one of the best hurlers of all time. He has twelve all-Ireland hurling titles (two with Ballyhale Shamrocks and ten with Kilkenny) as well as sixteen Leinster championships (three with his club and thirteen with his county). King Henry has been named Hurler of the Year three times and has appeared in the All Star team a record eleven teams.

Robbie Keane (Soccer)

Keane is the all time top goal scorer for the Republic of Ireland with sixty-five goals. At thirty-four years old he is in the twilight of a career that has saw him play for clubs in four different countries. Keane is currently at LA Galaxy where he just captained the team to a third MLS Cup in the last four years but it has been his performances on the international stage that have won Keane most admirers.

Paul O'Connell (Rugby Union)

The big Limerick man has been one of the biggest reasons behind Munster and Ireland's success in recent years and he is regarded as one of the best locks in rugby. O'Connell has won two Heineken Cups and three Celtic League's with Munster as well as two Six Nations Championships and the possibility of adding another if results go Ireland's way this weekend. O'Connell has also took part in three British and Irish tours and will be remembered as one of the greats.

Rory McIlroy (Golf)

McIlroy is from Holywood, County Down and is widely regarded as the world's best golfer taking over that particular mantra from Tiger Woods. At just twenty-five years old McIlroy has already won four majors and needs to win the Masters to complete a career Grand Slam. Many believe the Augusta course is perfect for his style and that 2015 will see more success for McIlroy.

Tony McCoy (Horse Racing)

The forty year old from Moneyglass, County Antrim has been a revelation in the world of horse racing. McCoy has been the champion jockey nineteen times in his career and looks set to win his twentieth and final title this year with a huge lead at the top of the standings. McCoy has announced he will retire at the end of the season and one wonders if we will ever see the like of him again.

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