UL Eagle Matt Hall announces his retirement

UL Eagles v DCU Saints - Nivea For Men’s SuperLeague Final 2012UL Eagles guard Matt Hall has announced his retirement from Men’s Premier League basketball aged 39.

The Welsh native had been playing regularly for the Limerick club this season but said his decision to focus on coaching was made easier by the ‘talent coming through the ranks.’

“I’d never leave Paul [Kelleher] short of players,” said the former international “but there’s seven or eight young guys coming through who could go on to have careers at the top of Irish club basketball.”

Hall made his debut in 2000 and went on to play over 280 times in a Limerick uniform. He started on the team which brought the Men’s National Cup back to Limerick for the first time in 2002 and was also central to the League & Cup double winning side of 2012. UL Eagles retained the League trophy in 2013 but Hall decided that this year’s National Cup Semi-Final performance against UCD Marian was to be his last. The 2002 final remains a highlight from his playing days with Burger King Limerick, Limerick Lions and UL Eagles.

“You could see how much it meant to people like Tommy Hehir, Seamus O’Connor and Harry Coyne,” he said. “I’d won a lot in England and was used to places like the Wembley Arena so it was very different when I first came to Limerick and a club that had no history of success.   It was a relief to win the cup again in 2012 but that first cup win will always stand out to me.”

Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter

Matt is originally from Crickhowell in South Wales and is the most capped Welsh International basketballer of all time with over 50 appearances for his country. He spent a season with CB Coslada in Madrid and returned in 2006 to take up a Player Coach role on Shannon side. He currently lives in Corbally with his wife Fiona and sons Daniel and Alex.

Statement from UL Eagles

“UL Eagles basketball today spoke of their high regard for their retiring guard Matt Hall. John King of UL Eagles said “This is a big decision for Matt and off course we are sorry to see him decide to retire. However, he has been a great playing servant for Limerick basketball over the last 13-14 years and has played with the team through the highs and the lows in those years. On behalf of our sponsor UL, the UL Eagles committee, and the UL playing squad, I want to wish Matt and Fiona and the boys the very best in the coming years. Matt is assistant coach with Paul Kelleher this year so we will be seeing plenty of him yet in the weeks and months ahead”.