Cyril Quirke


Cyril was born at St. Lawrence in 1942. In the tradition of learning the game in St. Lawrence, the back meadows became his everyday soccer field. When competitive soccer started in the l95O's with the Lions and Tigers, Cyril naturally progressed to that level. The competitors he played with on those Lions Club sponsored teams became the same team mates he played with for the Senior Laurentians. He moved up to become a member of the 1959 Burin Peninsula Junior Championship team and the 1960 All-Newfoundland Provincial Junior Championship team. Cyril's style of play was so similar to his big brother Peter's that everyone knew that when Peter retired from the game Cyril would be his replacement. For the next twelve years the combination of Cyril Quirke and Frank Tobin struck fear in the hearts, minds,and bodies of opponents

Cyril played on a number of championship teams during his career which included Burin Peninsula titles in 1961, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, Provincial titles in 1966, 1967, 1968, an Atlantic Provinces title in 1967. Cyril won a number of individual awards including Most Outstanding Fullback and Most Dedicated Player. Cyril's career culminated in 1970 with his selection to the Newfoundland Provincial All-Star team that represented this province in Challenge Cup play in Winnipeg, Manitoba

In the sport of soccer, there are many demanding positions but in the era of Cyril's play the WM formation or the 5-3-2 system saw Cyril as one of the only two full-backs who was quite often left at the mercy of the likes of Tommy Rose, Eli Lee, and Bow Collier In the majority of the cases, Cyril was certainly equal to the task.

Cyril was probably the first full-back to try the Bobby Orr style of going up the field on an offensive rush. This both amazed and confused opponents which quite often resultd in Cyril scoring a goal or assisting on one. This didn't bother Cyril because he knew Tobin was holding the fort back on defence.

Cyril also coached the St Lawrence Laurentians to the All-Newfoundland and Atlantic Championships in 1971.

There is little argument over the fact that Cyril was one of the most talented full backs to ever lace on a pair of boots but it is truly undisputed that he was one of the best sure-footed players to ever kick a soccer ball.

Cyril was inducted into the St. Lawrence Soccer Hall of Fame in 1982 and the Burin Peninsula Soccer Hall of Fame in 1995 and the Newfoundland Soccer Hall of Fame in 1996.