A CAREER in politics could be next for former Armagh forward Cahal Carvill after he brought his 13-years in inter-county hurling to an end a fortnight ago.
Swapping the caman code for the House of Commons isn’t on the Middletown clubman’s agenda just yet, but the Belfast-based solicitor certainly intends to use his new-found spare time productively.
Ireland international Carvill, who won two Nicky Rackard Cups and a Division 2B title with the Orchardmen as well as an Ulster minor football title, jokes that he may follow the lead of French president Emmanuel Macron by forming his own party.
“I might need to do a Macron in France and create my own party to be honest,” he said.
“Different people have come to me about different things, so I’m considering what I can do with my time and how that fits in with everything else.
“But you never know, watch this space.”
The 30-year-old from Middletown, right on the Armagh-Monaghan border, wouldn’t be the first GAA star to transfer his skills into politics. Armagh All-Ireland winner Justin McNulty is now an MLA for Newry and South Armagh and there are several examples south of the border, most notably Jack Lynch,the former Cork captain who went on to serve two terms as Taoiseach.
“Politics is something I have a keen interest in,” said Carvill.
“I sometimes just shake my head because our politicians really need to get live to the real issues like Brexit, like where Northern Ireland is compared to the Republic, the Customs Union and all of those different issues.
“I think there’s a real opportunity for Northern Ireland to be an economic powerhouse with a change to the corporation tax if we were to stay in the Customs Union and the single market. But our politicians are more concerned at this stage with Tweets and stupid things.
“So it’s something that I’m considering at this stage but obviously I have my job which I enjoy so it wouldn’t be anything that would interfere with that. It’s something that I would become more interested in when I have more time.”
But Carvill, who captain Armagh to promotion to Division 2A – the county’s high-ever NHL placing – doesn’t intend to hang up his boots just yet. He’ll still line out for his club in both codes and hopes to get involved in the development of Ulster hurling.
“We need to prioritise hurling above all other sports,” he said.
“There are a lot of passionate hurling people in Ulster. It’s great to see Cavan back up and playing and competing well in the senior ranks but there’s so much more that needs to be done, especially in the urban areas in Derry city and also in Belfast and the likes of Armagh and Omagh to push it.
“The Tyrone county board came out with their five-year plan in terms of where they want to take Tyrone hurling and Benburb and Killyclogher have started up hurling teams. There’s a new team in Mullabawn now which is great to see as well and Ulster hurling is very competitive at club level with Slaughtneil leading the way.
“When Slaughtneil played Dunloy in the Ulster semi-final there was 7,000 spectators at Owenbeg so there are a lot of people interested and a lot of passionate hurling people. But in the county scene we really need to push it as much as we can in terms of the development of the game.
“There could be a lot more done to push hurling in Ulster and now that I have a bit more time I’ll be looking into what I can do to assist with that.
“I like to be busy all the time and if I think I can help I’m more than willing to put my shoulder to the wheel.”
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