Anthony Tohill

Anthony Tohill
Personal information
Irish name Antóin Ó Tuathail
Sport Gaelic football
Position Midfield
Born (1971-08-02) 2 August 1971
Swatragh, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland
Height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Nickname Saint Anthony
Occupation Civil servant, television pundit
Years Club
1989-200x Swatragh
Years County Apps (scores)
1991-2003[1] Derry ? (4-121 (133))[2]
Inter-county titles
Ulster titles 2
All-Irelands 1
All Stars 4

Anthony Tohill (Irish: Antóin Ó Tuathail; born 2 August 1971) is an Irish former Gaelic footballer who played for Derry in the 1990s and early 2000s. He was part of Derry's 1993 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship winning side, also winning two Ulster Championships and four National League titles with the county. Tohill won four All Star awards during his career. He played club football with Michael Davitt's Swatragh.

Tohill played in the half forward line early in his inter-county career, but is chiefly remember as a midfielder where he played for most of his career. Despite his role as the midfield anchor, he is one of the all-time top Ulster scorers in Championship football, even though most of his playing was done at a time when all teams could expect a lot less matches than they do now.[2]

Tohill has won five Irish News Ulster All-Star awards since its inception in 1995 (1995, 1997, 1999, 2000 and 2001) and was named midfield on the Irish News Team of the Decade in 2004.[3] Tohill represented Ireland in four International Rules Series, was captain of the victorious 2001 team and was manager of the team for 2010. Tohill also played for Ulster for many years, winning six? Railway Cup medals with the province. He was described as an "exemplary trainer" during his playing days.[1]

Personal life

Tohill was born in Swatragh and is the son of Hugh and Eileen Tohill. He has three brothers and four sisters.[4] His brother Hugh Martin was also on the panel of Derry's 1993 All-Ireland winning team. His sister[5] Aileen has had a very successful camogie career with Swatragh and Derry[6] and is the Ulster Council's Lifestyle & Wellbeing Manager.[7] Tohill attended St. John's Primary School in the village. Tohill is currently a pundit for RTÉ's The Sunday Game GAA coverage.



Tohill was an "outstanding minor"[1] and played a prominent part in the 1989 Ulster Minor and All-Ireland Minor Football Championship winning Derry Minor team. After returning home from Australia in 1991 (see below), he concentrated on Gaelic football.

Tohill was part of Derry's National League winning team in 1992, scoring a late goal and a point to secure victory over Tyrone. That year he won his first All Star award for his performances during the year. In 1993 he won the Ulster Championship with Derry, before going on to win the 1993 All-Ireland Championship after a semi-final victory over Dublin and final defeat of Cork. He again was awarded an All Star.

Derry won back-to-back National Leagues in 1995 and 1996, with Tohill being prominent on both sides. Despite Derry only playing two Championship games in 1995, he was awarded his third All Star award. Tohill and Derry finished runners-up to Offaly in the 1998 National League decider.[8] He added a second Ulster Championship medal in 1998, before losing out to Galway in the All-Ireland semi-final. Tohill captained Derry to another National League title in 2000 and received his fourth All-Star that year. At that stage he had received more All Star nominations that any other Ulster player ever.[9] Tohill won Footballer of the Year at the 2000 Ulster GAA Writer's Association Awards.[10] Tohill had another good season in 2001, when Derry reached the All-Ireland semi-final and his omission from the All Star nominations list caused great shock.[11] He exited the county scene in 2003.[12]


Tohill played a major role in Swatragh's run to the 1993 Derry Championship final. The game was played on St. Stephen's Day in the snow at Glenullin. Lavey narrowly defeated the Swatragh side. Tohill was top scorer in the 1993 Derry Championship with 2-26 (32 points). Prior to this he was part of Swatragh's first ever Derry Minor Championship winning side in 1988.[4]

School and college

Tohill won MacRory Cups and one Hogan Cups with his school St. Patrick's College, Maghera.[13] He was also part of the 1993 Queens University Belfast team that won the Sigerson Cup. He was top scorer in the final with 0-06.[14]


Tohill won six? Railway Cup medals with Ulster.

Australian rules football

After leaving school and All-Ireland Minor and Hogan Cup success, Tohill was head-hunted by the Melbourne Demons[1] and after spent some time as a rookie player in Australian Rules football.[15] He would sometimes return home to play Gaelic football while there.[15] After breaking his leg,[15] he returned home from Melbourne in 1991 to concentrate on Gaelic football.

International rules football

Tohill played for Ireland on four International Rules tours between 1998 (when the series was revived) and 2001.[16] He made eight appearances for his country.[17] In 2001 he captained Ireland in their victorious tour of Australia.[18] He has since moved into the backrooms of the international setup, under manager Sean Boylan. He was part of the 2006 backroom team,[16] and was a selector for the 2008 Series,[19] and with fellow selector, Eoin Liston, took charge of the training sessions.[1] Observing Tohill taking the training sessions, Irish News journalist Paddy Heaney has predicted a future in management for Tohill, stating he "shows all the signs of someone who remains an avid student of the game".[1] In March 2010, he was named as manager of the Irish International rules team.[20]


Tohill played soccer for Derry City,[21] and Manchester United Reserves, during a two-week trial at the club in 1995.[22]







Note: The above lists may be incomplete. Please add any other honours you know of.


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Heaney, Paddy (21 October 2008). "Trainer Tohill taking it all in". The Irish News. p. 46. Retrieved 21 October 2008.
  2. 1 2 "Hotshot Oisin moving closer". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 15 May 2006. Retrieved 15 February 2007.
  3. "Team of the Decade". Irish News Ulster All-Stars website. Retrieved 31 December 2007.
  4. 1 2 "Young Anthony Is The Jewel In The Crown". Hogan Stand. Retrieved 2008-03-22.
  5. "Swatragh in All-Ireland bid". BBC Sport Online. 4 November 2000. Retrieved 11 November 2008.
  6. "Ulster Council Staff". Official Ulster GAA Council website. Archived from the original on 31 October 2008. Retrieved 11 November 2008.
  7. "Ulster Council to launch new strategic unit". The Irish News. 11 November 2008. p. 42. Archived from the original on 16 January 2016. Retrieved 11 November 2008.
  8. "Lyons' pride pass tough test of character to land League". Irish Examiner. 27 April 1998. Retrieved 2008-04-06.
  9. "Ulster have 14 All Star hopefuls". BBC Sport Online. 24 October 2000. Retrieved 2008-09-09.
  10. "Ulster GAA Writer's Association Awards - 2000". Archived from the original on 17 June 2006. Retrieved 2007-09-11.
  11. "Tohill left out of All Star nominations". RTÉ. Retrieved 2008-03-24.
  12. McCusker, Fergal (8 April 2008). "23 fans, 17 players, One memorable win". County Derry Post.
  13. "Queen's Hall of Fame". Retrieved 2007-08-28.
  14. "Sigerson Cup Roll of Honour - Top Scorers". Retrieved 2008-01-08.
  15. 1 2 3 Heaney, Paddy (24 October 2008). "Peace talks progress". The Irish News. p. 57.
  16. 1 2 "11 May: Coca Cola International Rules Manager Announced". Retrieved 2007-02-15.
  17. "Irish Panel 2006 - Squad & Management". GAA International Rules website (2006). Archived from the original on 13 October 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-11.
  18. "Tohill to lead Irish Down Under". Retrieved 2007-02-15.
  19. "Boylan names his selectors". Hogan Stand. 23 September 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-21.
  20. "Tohill takes charge of International Rules team". RTÉ Sport. 31 March 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-04.
  21. "Celtic pack the Brandywell". BBC News. 2 October 2000. Retrieved 2007-02-15.
  22. "Neil Lennon tips Armagh". BBC News. 18 May 2001. Retrieved 2007-02-15.
  23. Campbell, John (26 October 1996). "Ulster's 15 'stars'". Belfast Telegraph. Retrieved 2008-10-03.
  24. "GAA: Ulster players take their places in All Star line-up". Belfast Telegraph. 20 November 1996. Retrieved 2008-10-04.
  25. Campbell, John (26 October 1999). "Armagh in frame for 'star' haul". Belfast Telegraph. Retrieved 2008-10-04.

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Kieran McKeever
Derry senior football captain
Succeeded by
Enda Muldoon
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