Cora Staunton says advice from former players encouraged her to go back for a 23rd year

The Mayo forward recently decided to continue her inter-county career.

BY Sinéad Farrell 20:53 Sunday 29 January 2017, 20:53 29 Jan 2017

Image: Ladies Gaelic Football Facebook Page

Cora Staunton made her first appearance of her 23rd season of inter-county football today, after a number of weeks spent considering her future.

The Mayo stalwart put in another exhibition of scoring, finishing with a personal tally of 1-08 as her side lost out to Galway in the opening round of the Lidl Ladies National Football League.

But it's in only in recent days that Staunton decided to commit to a 23rd season of inter-county football along with goalkeeper Yvonne Byrne and Martha Carter.

Speaking after the game today, she confessed that she agonised over the decision at length and had to consider a number of factors before rejoining the Mayo fold.

She also discussed the prospect of a life after football and revealed the encouraging advice she received from former players that helped her in making the decision.

"Yeah, that's obviously a huge thing and people have asked me that before, 'what are you going to do after football?' As people said earlier on, it's like a drug. It's something that you're so used to doing. I'm doing this since I was 13, it's well documented that it's 23 years that I'm doing this."

Video and interview by Jerome Quinn for LGFA:

"You know no different but I'm sure after my career's finished with Mayo, I'll be involved in some way with football whether it's with the club or going into coaching - I'll still be involved. I've talked to a lot of people when you meet people on the streets or at different functions, especially people who said, 'I retired too early, if you're able to keep going, keep going.'"

Staunton also talked about her place in the overall picture of Mayo Ladies football and reiterated that no one player is irreplaceable in sport.

"It's not about me, it's not about Yvonne (Byrne) and it's not about Martha (Carter). We're only cogs in a big wheel. There's 30 girls there and a big management team that make Mayo tick and make Mayo what they are. It's a team sport and it's never going to be an individual sport."

"Today is about Mayo, it'll be about Mayo next week and it'll be about Mayo in a year or two's time. You're only there in the jersey to pass it on to someone. I've been longer in the jersey than many but when I do give it up, it'll go to someone else and I'll be forgotten about and there'll be a new star."

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