Thurles born and Tipperary left corner-forward ‘All Stars Hurler of the Year 2010,’ Mr Lar Corbett, International boxing star Mr Matthew Macklin and Thurles businessman Mr Kevin Coppinger are understood to be the current front runners interested in a take-over of the birthplace of the GAA, namely Hayes Hotel, Liberty Square in Thurles, Co Tipperary.
Amid calls from leading figures, including former GAA president and MEP Sean Kelly, for the premises to be purchased by the GAA, this historic hotel presently in receivership since last April, may now have been thrown a possible lifeline if a deal can be reached by vendor and interested purchasers.
Professional boxing champion Matthew Macklin, known as “The Tipperary Tornado,” though himself not a Thurles native, has indeed strong roots close to the town through his mother who is a native of Holycross, latter a village just outside Thurles. Matthew, a regular visitor to Ireland and an attendee at Tipperary sporting events, has himself in the past represented Tipperary in U-16 hurling, before choosing to concentrate on his sport of boxing.
In 2011, Lar launched “Lar Corbett’s Bar“ at Coppinger’s Bar, 4 Parnell Street in Thurles and both businessmen more recently also have acquired the Park Avenue Hotel, converting same into a popular Italian restaurant, “Puccini’s,” situated on the corner of Friar Street and Mathew Avenue, in Thurles.
Corbett has previously travelled to New York to watch Macklin train and last December, Corbett and Coppinger were believed to be both present in Atlantic City when Macklin beat American Lamar Russ in a middleweight bout.
This local Thurles / Tipperary “Trioka” are understood to have confirmed that an interest in purchasing this historic Hayes Hotel has been privately expressed and is now a possibility, subject to a suitable deal being agreed and accepted.