All Ireland Senior Hurling Final – Kilkenny 2-17 Tipperary 1-16

Kilkenny reclaim Liam MacCarthy Cup

From the GAA.ie web site

Sunday, September 04, 2011

GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Championship Final

Kilkenny 2-17 Tipperary 1-16

Kilkenny regained the Liam MacCarthy Cup with a performance borne of pure desire, clearly motivated by the pain of having it snatched from their possession by Tipperary 12 months ago. The coveted trophy returns to Noreside for the fifth time in six years and the 33rd in total, but few of their victories will have felt as sweet as this. They hurled like their lives depended on it and delivered the perfect answer to the critics who had predicted their demise as the premier hurling force in the country after their five-in-a-row dreams were shattered by Tipperary last year.

Fifteen minutes in, they led by five points to no score and at no point in the game did they really look like losing – not even when Tipperary came thundering back in the final quarter. They sucked the life out of Tipperary in the first half and the champions never really seemed to recover from that early onslaught. Tipperary had scored 15 goals en route to today’s final, but their forwards were denied the oxygen of space and any sort of decent ball for most of the game. The Kilkenny defence was awesome. Tommy Walsh had one of his finest days in a black and amber shirt, dominating Patrick Maher and inspiring those around him with some majestic catches and ferocious tackles.

All of Kilkenny’s big players shone. Henry Shefflin had a barnstorming first half, working himself into the ground and forcing Tipperary manager Declan Ryan to bring on Brendan Maher for the ailing John O’Keeffe after 25 minutes. Michael Fennelly, too, capped a fine season with a typically powerful run and superb finish that helped the Cats to a 1-8 to 0-6 lead at half-time.

Lar Corbett, with 7-9 to his name this season, was held scoreless, Jackie Tyrrell shadowing the Hurler of the Year brilliantly, while Eoin Kelly failed to register a single point from play. Kilkenny did it without resorting to any major tactical rethink. They simply went man for man and won the individual battles. With Brian Hogan back anchoring the defence from centre-back Kilkenny were far more solid and none of the cracks that appeared in last year’s final resurfaced. And yet after Kilkenny appeared to have killed the game off with their second goal after 49 minutes, Tipperary reshaped their team and came back to make a game of it in the final quarter.

Pa Bourke drove a shot through David Herity’s legs in the 55th minute and it looked like the drama that had been absent to that point was about to unfold in the final quarter. However, three points was as close as Tipperary came to them in the closing stages and Eoin Larkin’s point in added time gave the Cats a four-point cushion in the end. Kilkenny made the perfect start, Shefflin opening their account in the second minute. However, it could have been so much better had Larkin made the most of a brilliant chance. The Kilkenny full-forward was through on goal, but Michael Cahill saved the day for the champions, robbing him of the ball with a last-ditch tackle.

Undeterred, Larkin got out in front of his marker, Paul Curran, and slotted over his first of the day and the second in a sequence of five unanswered Kilkenny points. In the middle of that spree, Kilkenny were denied a second time, as Curran clawed the ball off the line after Larkin and Tipperary goalkeeper Brendan Cummins had clashed under a high ball. Kilkenny were playing with the greater intensity, winning ball in defence and denying Tipperary space. Richie Hogan, Richie Power and Shefflin all scored points from play as the Cats built a 0-5 to 0-0 lead by the 15th minute. Noel McGrath finally got Tipperary off the mark two minutes later, while two Eoin Kelly frees reduced the gap. However, Tipperary were struggling and manager Ryan decided to make a change in the 25th minute, bringing in Brendan Maher for O’Keeffe in the half-back line.

Tipperary, though, were in even bigger trouble just before half-time when Kilkenny worked a brilliant team goal. Shefflin beat his man to the ball, found Richie Hogan who laid it off quickly to the Michael Fennelly and the Ballyhale man slammed the ball home expertly to help Kilkenny to a 1-8 to 0-6 half-time lead. Nothing had worked for Tipperary in the first half and they made two more changes at the break, as Pa Bourke and Benny Dunne were brought in to see if they could make some difference. Dunne scored immediately after the restart, but Kilkenny answered with three points in a row in a three-minute spell.

Colin Fennelly finished with three points from play in his first All-Ireland final, while Brennan justified his selection with a point and the pass that set up Kilkenny’s second goal. It came on 49 minutes, and it was a sweet move, started – as so much of Kilkenny’s good work did – when they won ball in the half back line. Michael Rice’s clearance found Brennan and the veteran appeared to have taken too much out of the ball, but Richie Hogan controlled his pass expertly and planted his shot in the top corner. Kilkenny were eight points up and seemingly cruising. But it was around the three-quarter marker that their intensity levels inevitably dropped. Shefflin and Brennan were tiring after putting in Trojan shifts and the Cats started turning over ball for the first time.

Tipp’s goal arrived one of the few times Corbett managed to get his hands on the ball. He beat Tyrrell for pace and offloaded to Pa Bourke, who looked to have shot from too far out but the ball went through Herity’s legs. With 15 minutes left, the champions were just four points down and they were finally starting to play. Noel McGrath finished a fine move and Eoin Kelly sent over his sixth placed ball of the day to cut the arrears to just three with six minutes left.

Kilkenny dug deep and called on all their reserves of strength. Walsh, their inspirational wing-back, and JJ Delaney stood out like pillars. Shefflin, too, scored his seventh of the day to help erase the memories of last year. They weren’t about to let it slip. Not now. Kelly and Gearóid Ryan made it a three-point game in added time, but it was Eoin Larkin who secured the Cats’ 33rd title two minutes into added time.

Kilkenny Scorers: H Shefflin 0-7 (0-5f), R Hogan 1-1, M Fennelly 1-0, C Fennelly 0-3, E Larkin 0-2, R Power 0-2, E Brennan 0-1, M Rice 0-1.

Tipperary Scorers: E Kelly 0-8 (0-7f), P Bourke 1-0, N McGrath 0-3 (0-1sl), G Ryan 0-2, C O’Mahony 0-1, B Dunne 0-1, J O’Brien 0-1.

Kilkenny: D Herity, P Murphy, N Hickey, J Tyrrell, T Walsh, B Hogan, JJ Delaney, M Fennelly, M Rice, E Brennan, R Power, H Shefflin, C Fennelly, E Larkin, R Hogan. Subs: TJ Reid for C Fennelly (38-HT), TJ Reid for E Brennan (60), J Mulhall for R Hogan (65).

Tipperary: B Cummins; P Stapleton, P Curran, M Cahill; J O’Keeffe, C O’Mahony, P Maher; G Ryan, S McGrath; S Callanan, N McGrath, P Maher; E Kelly, J O’Brien, L Corbett. Subs: B Maher for J O’Keeffe (25), P Bourke for Callanan (HT), B Dunne for S McGrath (HT), D Young for C O’Mahony (58), J O’Neill for J O’Brien (66).

Referee: Brian Gavin (Offaly)

Attendance: 81, 214

 

All Ireland Senior Hurling Final 2011

Tipperary V Kilkenny

Croke Park Sunday, September 4th at 3.30pm

Team News

The Tipperary senior hurling team to play Kilkenny in the All Ireland senior hurling final next Sunday has no changes in personnel from the team which started the semi-final against Dublin. There is one positional switch with Seamus Callanan at number 10 and Noel McGrath at number 11.

The team is:

1. Brendan Cummins (Ballybacon-Grange)

2. Paddy Stapleton (Borris-Ileigh)

3. Paul Curran (Mullinahone)

4. Michael Cahill (Thurles Sarsfields)

5. John O’Keeffe (Clonoulty Rossmore)

6. Conor O’Mahony (Newport)

7. Padraic Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)

8. Gearóid Ryan (Templederry Kenyons)

9. Shane McGrath (Ballinahinch)

10. Seamus Callanan (Drom & Inch)

11. Noel McGrath (Loughmore Castleiney)

12. Patrick Maher (Lorrha & Dorrha)

13. Eoin Kelly (Mullinahone) Captain

14. John O’Brien (Toomevara)

15. Lar Corbett (Thurles Sarsfields)

 

Tipperary Press Pack

Welcome and Introduction

Welcome to the Tipperary Press Pack for the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Final 2011.

The purpose of this press pack is to provide you with some useful background information about the Tipperary team and the Tipperary Kilkenny rivalry over the years.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all sections of the media for their co-operation and support during the year and the generally fair manner in which they do their work.

I want to thank the Tipperary Manager, Declan Ryan, his colleagues on the management team, the Tipperary players and my fellow officers of Tipperary County Board for providing information for the Press Pack.

I also want to thank most sincerely Seamus O’Doherty and Ed Donnelly for their assistance preparing this Press Pack and the work they do on an on-going basis in relation to media and communications matters for Tipperary GAA. It would not have been possible without their research, input and hard work.

Ger Ryan

PRO, Tipperary County Board

Email: pro.tipperary@gaa.ie

Team Announcement

The team will be announced by email and local radio no later than 9pm on Thursday September 1st. The team may be announced on Tuesday August 30th. It will subsequently be published on the Tipperary GAA website (www.tipperary.gaa.ie)

Player Profiles

Eoin Kelly (Captain, Mullinahone)

Age 29 Height 5ft 10in Weight 13st 12lbs Occupation: Finance Rep,

Bank of Ireland Finance

 

Team captain Eoin, who was born on January 6, 1982, plays for the Mullinahone club. Eoin made his Senior championship debut vs. Galway in the 2000 All-Ireland Quarter-Final as a forward substitute – he was also sub-goalie on that occasion if required. Eoin won an All-Ireland Colleges medal with St. Kieran’s of Kilkenny in 2000 and has 2 Munster Minor Hurling medals – 1997 and 1999 and 2 Munster Under 21 medals in 1999 and 2003 (as captain). Eoin has won 2 National Hurling League medals, 4 Munster Senior Hurling medals (2008 and 2011 as captain) and 2 All-Ireland Senior Hurling medals (2001 and 2010 as captain). Eoin has played in goal for the Tipp minors and Mullinahone in the past but is better known as an excellent forward, one of the best in the modern game. Eoin is a brother of former All-Star Paul Kelly.

 

Eoin won a Railway Cup medal with Munster in 2001 and captained Munster in the 2006 semi-final defeat to Connacht, scoring 1-6 in the process. Eoin won an All-Star award at corner-forward and also won the Eircell Vodafone Young Hurler of the Year in 2001. He repeated both of these feats in 2002 and also won All-Stars in 2004, 2005 and 2006 to become only the second player ever to win 5 All-Star awards at the age of 24 (Pat Hartigan of Limerick was the other). Tommy Walsh (Kilkenny) subsequently equalled this achievement. Eoin won his sixth All-Star award in 2010 at left corner-forward.

 

Eoin is Tipperary’s all-time leading scorer in Senior Hurling Championship history and finished as top scorer in the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship. Eoin was vice-captain to Paul Ormond in 2008 and captained Tipperary to win the 2008 Waterford Crystal Cup, the 2008 National Hurling League title and the Munster Senior Hurling title. Eoin won a County Senior Hurling medal with his club Mullinahone in 2002, scoring 2-7 in the replay and winning the man of the match award. Eoin has won 7 South Senior Hurling titles with Mullinahone in 1997, 1999, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2009.

 

Eoin later studied civil engineering at Limerick Institute of Technology and graduated in 2006. He won a Fitzgibbon Cup medal with the college in 2005 as team captain. Eoin finished a credible third behind team mate Brendan Cummins in the 2006 All-Ireland Poc Fada Final in the Cooley Mountains.

 

Championship debut – 2000 vs. Galway

Number of Appearances – 53

Scored – 21-348

________________________________________

 

Conor O’Mahony (Newport)

 

Age 26 Height: 6ft 1in Weight: 14st Occupation: Sales Rep

 

Conor was born on October 18th, 1984 and plays for the Newport club. Conor is the vice-captain of the Tipperary Senior Hurlers for 2011. Conor made his competitive debut for the Tipperary Senior Hurlers against Antrim in the 2005 National Hurling League. Conor is a very versatile player. Conor won 2 Munster Minor Hurling medals in 2001 (at midfield) and 2002 (at centre-forward). Conor helped Tipperary to win the 2003 Munster U-21 final by coming off the bench to score a goal in extra time against Cork while he won his second Munster U-21 medal at full-back in 2004 before also lining out at full-back in the 2005 Munster U-21 Final. He won Fitzgibbon Cup medals with Limerick Institute of Technology in 2005 (at corner-back) and 2007 (at centre-back). Conor was nominated for an All-Star at centre-back in 2007, 2008 and 2009, winning an All-Star award in 2008 at centre-back and in 2009 at left half-back to accommodate Michael Walsh (Waterford).

 

Conor won a National Hurling League medal in 2008 at centre-back, scoring 9 points from long range frees in that NHL campaign. Conor won the RTE man of the match for his performance at centre-back against Cork in the 2008 Munster Semi-Final and captured his first Munster Senior Hurling Championship medal in 2008 against Clare, winning further Munster SH medals in 2009 and 2011. Conor’s first score in the Championship came from a long range free against Waterford in the 2008 All-Ireland semi-final. Conor has been selected as vice-captain of the Tipperary Senior Hurling team for 2009 and led out the team from centre-back in 5 matches played including the All-Ireland Final. Conor won an All-Ireland Senior Hurling medal in 2010, lining out at centre-back in the 6 match campaign which ended with a defeat of Kilkenny in the final.

 

Championship debut – 2005 vs. Limerick (replay)

Number of Appearances – 32

Scored – 0-6

________________________________________

 

Pa Bourke (Thurles Sarsfields)

 

Age 23 Height 6ft Weight 13st Occupation: Apprentice Carpenter

 

Pa was born on May 18th, 1988 and plays with the Thurles Sarsfields club. Pa played with the Tipperary Minor hurlers in 2005 and 2006, finishing as top scorer in 2006 with 3-35 as he helped the Premier County win the All-Ireland Minor Hurling title. Pa also won a County Minor Hurling medal with Sarsfields in 2006 and won back to back County Minor Football titles with Sarsfields in 2005 and 2006, winning the man of the match award in the 2006 County Minor Football final. Pa won a County Senior Hurling medal with Thurles Sarsfields in 2009, scoring four points in the final against Drom & Inch and also in 2010. Pa has won 2 County Under 21 “A” Hurling Championship medals in 2008 and 2009 (as captain). Pa was a key member of the Thurles CBS team which lost to St. Flannan’s in the 2005 Dr. Harty Cup Final.

 

Pa made his competitive debut with the Senior Hurlers in the preliminary round of the Waterford Crystal Cup Senior Hurling competition in January 2007, scoring 4 points, 3 from play at corner-forward. Pa made his League debut against Antrim in March 2007, scoring 1-1. Pa made his championship debut at corner-forward against Limerick in the first drawn game in the Munster semi-final in June 2007. Pa won a National Hurling League medal in 2008, 3 Munster Senior Hurling Championship medals in 2008, 2009 and 2011 and an All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship medal in 2010. Pa is a grandson of John Maher of Killinan, Tipperary All-Ireland winning captain in 1945.

 

Championship debut – 2007 vs. Limerick (first drawn game)

Number of Appearances – 13

Scored – 0-6

________________________________________

 

Shane Bourke (JK Brackens)

 

Age 22 Height 5ft 10in Weight 12st Occupation: Student, UCC

 

Shane was born on November 9th 1988 and plays for the JK Brackens GAA club. Shane won an All-Ireland Minor Hurling medal with Tipperary in 2006. Shane played Under 21 Hurling with Tipperary in 2008 and 2009, winning a Munster Under 21 medal in 2008. Shane made his National Hurling League debut as a substitute against Waterford in March 2011. Shane won the man of the match award against Galway in the 2011 Allianz Hurling League, scoring 3-4 from play. Shane won a Munster Senior Hurling medal in 2011, making his Championship debut in the victory over Waterford.

 

Shane is a final year Arts student at UCC and was part of the team which won UCC’s 40th Fitzgibbon Cup title in 2009. Shane is a nephew of Seamus Bourke who represented Tipperary at Minor, Under 21, Junior and Senior Hurling level in the 1970s and 1980s. Shane’s father Paddy also played senior hurling for Tipperary.

 

Championship debut – 2011 vs. Waterford

Number of Appearances – 2

Scored – 0-1

________________________________________

 

Michael Cahill (Thurles Sarsfields)

 

Age 22 Height 5ft 10in Weight 12st Occupation: Student, UCC

 

Michael was born on January 3rd 1989 and plays for the Thurles Sarsfields club. Michael won All-Ireland medals at Senior and Under 21 Hurling in 2010. Michael won All-Ireland Minor Hurling medals in 2006 and 2007 as well as winning Munster Minor (2007), Munster Under 21 (2008 and 2010) and Munster Senior (2011) Hurling medals. Michael was a key member of the Thurles CBS team which lost to St. Flannan’s in the 2005 Dr. Harty Cup Final.

 

Michael made his debut with the Thurles Sarsfields Senior Hurling team in 2006. Michael has won 2 County U16 A Hurling medals with Durlas Og (2004, 2005). He has also won 2 County Minor “A” Hurling medals (2006 and 2007), 2 County Minor “A” Football medals (2005, 2006) and 2 County Under 21 “A” Hurling medals (2008 and 2009). Michael won County Senior Hurling medals with Thurles Sarsfields in 2009 and 2010. Michael played Fitzgibbon Cup Hurling with UCC in 2007, 2008 and 2009, winning a Fitzgibbon Cup medal in 2009. Michael made his Senior inter-county debut as a substitute in the 2009 National Hurling League against Limerick. Michael made his Championship debut at left half back against Cork in May 2010. Michael was nominated for an All-Star award in 2010.

 

Championship debut – 2010 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 10

________________________________________

 

Seamus Callanan (Drom and Inch)

 

Age 22 Height 6ft 3in Weight 13st 11lbs Occupation: Student, LIT

 

Seamus was born on September 15th, 1988. Seamus won an All-Ireland Senior Hurling Medal in 2010 as a substitute against Kilkenny, scoring 2 points from play. Seamus won an All-Ireland Minor Hurling medal with Tipperary in 2006, scoring the winning point as a substitute in the 2006 All-Ireland Minor Hurling semi-final against Kilkenny. Seamus helped his club Drom & Inch win Mid Senior Hurling titles in 2006, 2008 and 2009. Seamus made his National League debut as a substitute against Offaly in 2008, scoring 0-3. Seamus won a National Hurling League medal as a late forward substitute in 2008.

 

Seamus made his Championship debut against Cork in the 2008 Munster Senior Hurling Championship Semi-Final, scoring 3 points from play. In his next 5 Championship matches, Seamus scored a goal in each game. Seamus has won 3 Munster Senior Hurling medals in 2008, 2009 and 2011. Seamus was nominated for an All-Star award in 2008 and 2009 as well as being nominated as Young Hurler of the Year in 2008.

 

Championship debut – 2008 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 18

Scored – 8-33

________________________________________

 

John Coghlan (Moyne Templetuohy)

 

Age 22 Height 6ft Weight 13st 7lbs Occupation: Primary School Teacher

 

John was born on January 6th 1989 and is a member of the Moyne-Templetuohy GAA club. John has won All-Ireland Hurling medals with Tipperary at Minor (2007) and Under 21 (2010). John was part of the Tipperary Intermediate Hurling panel in 2009 and 2010.

 

John also played Minor Football with Tipperary for 2 years (2006 and 2007) and played inter-county Under 21 Football for 4 years (2007 to 2010), winning Munster Under 21 Football honours in 2010. John made his National Hurling League debut as a second half sub against Offaly in March 2011. John made his Championship debut as a substitute against Clare in the 2011 Munster Semi-Final. John won a Munster Senior Hurling medal in 2011. John is a Primary school teacher in Roscrea. His brother, Hugh, is a member of the Tipperary senior football team and his father, also Hugh, is PRO of the Tipperary Football Board.

 

Championship debut – 2011 vs. Clare

Number of Appearances – 1

________________________________________

 

Lar Corbett (Thurles Sarsfields)

 

Age 30 Height 6ft 2in Weight 13st 3lbs Occupation: Electrician & Publican

 

2010 Hurler of the Year, Lar was born on March 16th 1981 and plays for the Thurles Sarsfields club. Lar joined the Tipperary Senior Hurling panel at the age of 19, having never played minor hurling or Under-21 hurling for Tipperary up to that stage. Lar represented Tipperary at Under 21 level in 2001 and 2002. He made his Senior inter-county debut vs. Clare in the 2000 South East Hurling League playing at corner-forward. Lar won a National Hurling League medal in 2001, scoring 4 points in the final and 4-11 in 6 games in the 2001 NHL competition. Lar won his second National Hurling League medal in 2008, scoring 1-3 in the final to earn the man of the match award. Lar scored 5 goals and 10 points in the 2008 NHL campaign. Lar also won a Munster Senior Hurling medal in 2008, scoring 2 points in the final while he scored 2-2 in the 2009 Munster Senior Hurling Final while capturing his third medal. Lar’s fourth Munster Senior Hurling medal came with a memorable man of the match performance, scoring 4-4 from play against Waterford in the 2011 Munster Final.

 

Lar won an All-Ireland and Munster Senior medal in 2001, scoring 1-1 in the Munster Final against Limerick and 2 points in the All-Ireland Final. Lar won his second All-Ireland Senior medal in 2010, scoring 3 goals in the Final and winning the RTE man of the match award. Lar scored 6-11 in total during the 2010 Championship. Lar won the 2010 GAA Player of the Month award for September, sponsored by Vodafone following his man of the match performance in the All-Ireland Final.

 

Lar won a County minor medal with Thurles Sarsfields in 1999 and County Senior medals in 2005, 2009 and 2010. Lar captained Tipperary against Waterford in the 2006 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Quarter-Final. Lar won an Inter Provincial Hurling medal in 2007, scoring two points from play at corner-forward for Munster in their victory over Connacht. Lar was nominated for All-Star awards in 2008, 2009 and 2010, winning an All-Star at right half forward in 2009 and another at left-half forward in 2010. Lar was nominated along with Kilkenny duo Henry Shefflin and Tommy Walsh for the 2009 Hurler of the Year award and won the Hurler of the Year award in 2010.

 

Championship debut – 2001 vs. Clare

Number of Appearances – 47

Scored – 26-67

________________________________________

 

Brendan Cummins (Ballybacon Grange)

 

Age 35 Height 6ft 1in Weight 15st Occupation: Financial Planning

Consultant, AIB

 

Brendan who was born on May 11, 1975 plays for Ballybacon-Grange. A bank official by profession, he has won 2 All-Ireland medals, 4 Munster SH medals, 4 National League medals and an All-Ireland Under-21 medal in 1995. Brendan won a Railway Cup medal with Munster hurlers when he captained them to victory in 2001. He has been on the Tipperary Senior Hurling panel since 1993. Brendan was selected as goalie on the 2000, 2001, 2003, 2008 and 2010 All-Star teams and won man of the match in the 2001 National Hurling League final. Brendan scored a point from a long range free in the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Final against Kilkenny.

 

Brendan has won the All-Ireland Poc Fada title in the Cooley Mountains on five occasions in 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2011. He is also an accomplished footballer and played for a number of years as a forward with the Tipperary Senior football team, playing in 16 Championship matches. His father John played for Tipp and Munster footballers and coached Waterford senior footballers in 1999. Brendan has kept 19 clean sheets in his championship career to date. Brendan has more Inter-County Senior Hurling Championship appearances than any other player, passing Christy Ring’s total of 65 appearances in the 2011 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Semi-Final against Dublin.

 

Championship debut – 1995 vs. Waterford

Number of Appearances – 66 (hurling championship record)

Scored – 0-1

________________________________________

 

Paul Curran (Mullinahone)

 

Age 29 Height 6ft 1in Weight 13st 11lbs Occupation: Primary School Teacher

 

Paul was born on November 11th 1981 and plays for the Mullinahone club. He made his Senior inter-county debut vs. Cork in the 2001 National League. Paul won an All-Ireland Senior Hurling medal at full-back in 2010. Paul has won 2 National League and 4 Munster Senior Hurling medals. His Senior championship debut came as a sub in 2002 vs. Offaly. Paul won a County Senior Hurling medal with his club Mullinahone in 2002 and captained them to South Senior Hurling Championship honours in 2009.

 

Paul captained the Waterford Institute of Technology to Fitzgibbon Cup honours in 2003. He played full-back for Tipperary in the 2003 championship and after playing at corner-back in 2004 and 2005, he has returned to the position of full-back since the 2006 Munster Final. Paul was nominated for All-Star awards in the full-back position in 2008 and won an All-Star at No. 3 in 2010.

 

Championship debut – 2002 vs. Offaly

Number of Appearances – 37

________________________________________

 

 

Benny Dunne (Toomevara)

 

Age 30 Height 5ft 10in Weight 12st 9lbs Occupation: Sales Rep, Britvic Irl.

 

Benny was born on September 22nd 1980 and plays for the Toomevara club. Benny captained the Tipperary Senior Hurling team in 2005 and 2007. He has won 8 County Senior Hurling medals and 2 Munster Club medals playing in defence, mainly at centre-back, for his club. Benny won a National Hurling League medal at midfield in 2008 and a Munster Senior Hurling medal as a sub later that summer. Benny scored a point from play as a sub in the 2009 Munster Senior Hurling Final won by Tipperary over Waterford and also came on as a sub in the 2011 Munster Final win over Waterford. Benny won an All-Ireland Senior Hurling medal in 2010, scoring a point from play after coming on as a sub in the second half.

 

Benny has lined out in every line of the field at inter-county level with the exception of goal-keeper. Benny, who is a younger brother of All-Ireland SH medalists Tommy (Tipp’s current coach) and Terry, played U-21 hurling with Tipperary in 2000 and 2001. Benny made his competitive debut for Tipperary against Derry in March 2002. Benny won Dr. Harty Cup Munster and All-Ireland Colleges hurling medals with St. Flannan’s College, Ennis.

 

Championship debut – 2002 vs. Clare

Number of Appearances – 38

Scored – 5-30

________________________________________

 

Darren Gleeson (Portroe)

 

Age 30 Height 6ft 2in Weight 15st 5lbs Occupation: Financial Adviser,

Canada Life

 

Darren was born on March 19th 1981 and plays for the Portroe club. Darren joined the Tipperary Senior Hurling panel in 2008 having had previous inter-county experience as sub-goalie on the 2002 Tipperary Under 21 Hurling panel. Darren won a National Hurling League medal as a substitute in 2008. Darren has won 3 Munster Senior Hurling medals. Darren made his National League debut against Galway in the 2009 National Hurling League. Darren made his Championship debut as a 10 minute blood sub against Cork in the 2009 Munster Senior Hurling Championship and also came on as a sub in the 2011 Munster final against Waterford. Darren was sub-goalie on the 2010 Tipperary Senior Hurling panel which captured All-Ireland honours.

 

Championship debut – 2009 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 2

________________________________________

 

Michael Gleeson (Thurles Sarsfields)

 

Age 23 Height 5ft 8in Weight 11st 9lbs Occupation: Accountant

 

Michael was born on April 14th 1988 and plays for the Thurles Sarsfields GAA club. Michael won an All-Ireland Minor Hurling medal in 2006 and played Under 21 Hurling for the county for three years (2007 to 2009), winning a Munster Under 21 Hurling medal in 2008. Michael made his National Hurling League debut at midfield against Dublin in February 2011. Michael won a Munster Senior Hurling medal as a sub in 2011. Michael has won County Senior Hurling medals with his club in 2009 and 2010. Michael works as an Accountant. His father, also Michael, is a selector with the Tipperary senior hurling team.

________________________________________

 

 

Seamus Hennessy (Kilruane MacDonaghs)

 

Age 21 Height 6ft 2in Weight 14st 12lbs Occupation: Student, NUIG

 

Seamus was born on October 9th, 1989. Seamus plays for the Kilruane MacDonaghs club. Seamus made his Senior inter-county debut for Tipperary against Waterford in the 2009 Waterford Crystal Cup, scoring 3 points from right half-forward in a Tipperary victory. Seamus scored 6 points in total in the 2009 Waterford Crystal Cup competition. Seamus made his National League debut as a substitute against Cork in the 2009 League campaign, scoring two points from play after being introduced. Seamus made his Championship debut against Cork in May 2010. Seamus won an All-Ireland Senior Hurling medal in 2010 as a substitute, scoring a point from play in the final against Kilkenny. Seamus won the 2010 Bord Gáis Energy Breaking Through Player of the Year award.

 

Seamus won All-Ireland Minor Hurling medals in 2006 and 2007 at wing-forward. Seamus won a Munster Minor Hurling medal in 2007 and captained Tipperary to win the Munster Under 21 Hurling title in 2008 and won another Munster Under 21 Hurling medal in 2010. Seamus has won 2 Munster Senior Hurling medals.

 

Seamus won an All-Ireland Under 21 Hurling medal in 2010 at midfield, scoring 0-3 in the final against Galway. Seamus was the reliable free-taker for the 2007 All-Ireland Minor Hurling Championship, scoring a total of 33 points in 5 matches playing at right half-forward. At club level, Seamus has won County medals at Minor “A” Hurling, Under 21 “A” Hurling (2) and Junior “B” Football as well as numerous North Divisional medals with Kilruane MacDonaghs. Seamus is the youngest player to play Senior for his club.

 

Championship debut – 2010 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 4

Scored – 0-1

________________________________________

 

Pat Kerwick (Killenaule)

 

Age 29 Height: 5ft 11in Weight: 12st 6lbs Occupation: Bricklayer

 

Pat “Festy” Kerwick was born on May 18th 1982 and plays for the Killenaule club. Pat made his Senior competitive debut for Tipperary in 2006 Waterford Crystal Cup against Limerick. Pat made his National Hurling League debut against Offaly in 2008, lining out at right half-forward scoring 1-1 from play. Pat won a National Hurling League medal as a substitute in 2008. Pat made his Championship debut as a substitute against Cork in the 2008 Munster Senior Hurling Championship Semi-Final, scoring a point from play. Pat has won 3 Munster Senior Hurling medals and was a member of the Tipperary Senior Hurling panel in 2010 which captured All-Ireland honours, although his season was heavily disrupted by injury.

 

Pat never played Minor, Under 21 or Intermediate hurling with Tipperary. Pat has won South Senior Hurling medals with his club in 2005, 2007 and 2008. Pat was nominated for an All-Star award at wing-forward in 2009.

 

Championship debut – 2008 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 8

Scored – 1-10

________________________________________

 

Stephen Lillis (Thurles Sarsfields)

 

Age 25 Height 5ft 10in Weight 12st 7lbs Occupation: Barman

 

Stephen was born on January 10th 1986 and plays with the Thurles Sarsfields club. Stephen made his Championship debut as a substitute against Clare in the 2011 Munster Semi-Final. Stephen has 1 Munster Senior Hurling medal. Stephen was also on the senior hurling panel in 2007. He was on the minor hurling panel in 2004 and the under 21 panel in 2006 and 2007. He has won three county senior hurling titles with Thurles Sarsfields in 2005, 2009 and 2010.

 

Championship debut – 2011 vs. Clare

Number of Appearances – 1

________________________________________

 

Brendan Maher (Borris-Ileigh)

 

Age 22 Height 5ft 11in Weight 12st 11lbs Occupation Primary School Teacher

 

Brendan was born on January 5th, 1989. Brendan plays for the Borris-Ileigh club. Brendan made his Senior inter-county debut for Tipperary against Waterford in the 2009 Waterford Crystal Cup, lining out at left corner-back in a Tipperary victory. Brendan made his National Hurling League debut against Cork in February 2009, lining out at wing-back. Brendan made his Championship debut as a substitute against Cork in the 2009 Munster Senior Hurling Championship. Brendan’s first Championship start came at left half-back in the 2009 All-Ireland semi-final vs. Limerick. Brendan was an ever present at midfield in the 2010 All-Ireland Championship, helping Tipperary to capture the All-Ireland title at the expense of Kilkenny with Brendan scoring 2 points from play in the final.

 

Brendan played for the Tipperary Minor Hurlers for three years, winning 2 All-Ireland Minor medals in 2006 and in 2007 (as captain). Brendan has also a Munster Minor Hurling medal in 2007 and 2 Munster Senior Hurling medals (2009 and 2011). Brendan scored 0-12 from play in the 2007 All-Ireland Minor Hurling Championship campaign following up from his contribution of 1-4 in the 2006 campaign. Brendan was the second player from the Borris-Ileigh club to captain a Tipperary Minor team to All-Ireland success, following in the footsteps of Paddy Kenny in 1947. Brendan lined out with the Tipperary Under 21 Hurlers in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010, winning Munster medals in 2008 and 2010 and an All-Ireland medal in 2010, playing at centre-back in the final. Brendan was won an All Star award at midfield in 2010 and also captured the 2010 Young Hurler of the Year award. He was also nominated for the hurler of the year award. Brendan was shortlisted for the 2010 Bord Gáis Energy Breaking Through Player of the Year award. He suffered a broken ankle earlier this year and made his first championship appearance of 2011 as a substitute in the Munster final.

 

Championship debut – 2009 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 13

Scored – 0-7

________________________________________

 

Padraic Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)

 

Age 22 Height 6ft 1in Weight 14st 11lbs Occupation: Student

 

Padraic was born on February 9th 1989. Padraic plays for the Thurles Sarsfields club and made his Senior debut with the club in 2006. Padraic won All-Ireland Minor Hurling medals as a full-back in 2006 and 2007. Padraic also won a Munster Minor Hurling medal in 2007, Munster Under 21 Hurling medals in 2008 and 2010 (as Captain) and 2 Munster Senior Hurling medals (2009 and 2011). In 2010, Padraic won an All-Ireland Senior Hurling medal playing at left half-back in the final against Kilkenny. Padraic captained Tipperary to Munster and All-Ireland Under 21 honours in 2010, playing at centre-back in the Munster Final and at full-back in the All-Ireland Final.

 

With Durlas Og, Padraic won two County Under 16 A Hurling medals (2004 and 2005). He has also won 2 County Minor “A” Hurling medals (2006 and 2007), 2 County Minor “A” Football medals (2005 and 2006), 2 County Under 21 “A” Hurling medals (2008 and 2009) and a County Senior Hurling medal (2009), winning the man of the match award in the 2009 County Senior Hurling Final. Padraic won the Corn Na Mac Leinn All Ireland Football title in 2007 with the Tipperary Institute. Padraic’s father Paddy won an All-Ireland Minor Hurling medal in 1980. Padraic made his National League debut as a substitute against Dublin in March 2009. Padraic made his Championship debut at wing-back against Cork in the 2009 Munster Senior Hurling Championship. Padraic was nominated for All-Star awards in 2009 and 2010, winning an award at full-back in 2009. Padraic was also nominated for the 2009 Young Hurler of the Year award along with Noel McGrath and Joe Canning (Galway).

 

Championship debut – 2009 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 15

Scored – 0-4

________________________________________

 

Patrick Maher (Lorrha and Dorrha)

 

Age 21 Height 5ft 11in Weight 12st 8lbs Occupation: Leisure Centre Employee

 

Patrick “Bonner” Maher was born on October 12th, 1989. Patrick plays for the Lorrha club. Patrick made his Senior inter-county debut for Tipperary against Waterford in the 2009 Waterford Crystal Cup, lining out at left half-forward. Patrick scored a goal against Clare in the 2009 Waterford Crystal Cup Final. Patrick made his debut in the National Hurling League in February 2009, lining out at centre-forward against Waterford and scoring a point in a 2-13 to 1-12 Tipperary victory. Patrick made his Championship debut at left half-forward against Wexford in the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Qualifiers, scoring two points from play. Patrick lined out at left half-forward in the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Final, helping Tipperary to defeat Kilkenny. Patrick also won an All-Ireland Under 21 Hurling medal in 2010, lining out in the half-forward line and scoring a goal in the All-Ireland final against Galway.

 

Patrick won Munster and All-Ireland Minor Hurling medals in 2007, scoring 3-2 from play in the 2007 Minor Championship. Patrick won a County Intermediate Hurling title with his club in 2007 and helped Banagher Colleges win the Leinster Vocational schools title in 2007. Patrick was also on the Tipperary Intermediate Hurling panel which lost the 2008 Munster Final to Limerick. Patrick won 2 Munster Senior Hurling medals (2009 and 2011) and a Munster Under 21 Hurling medal in 2010. Patrick was nominated for an All-Star award in 2010 in the half-forward line.

 

Championship debut – 2010 vs. Wexford

Number of Appearances – 9

Scored – 1-3

________________________________________

 

Noel McGrath (Loughmore Castleiney)

 

Age 20 Height 6ft Weight 13st 11lbs Occupation: Student, UCD

 

Noel was born on December 17th, 1990. Noel plays for the Loughmore-Castleiney club. Noel made his Senior inter-county debut for Tipperary against Clare in the 2009 Waterford Crystal Cup Final, scoring a point from play at right corner-forward. Noel made his National Hurling League debut against Cork in February 2009. Noel made his Championship debut at corner-forward against Cork in the 2009 Munster Senior Hurling Championship, scoring 3 points from play. Noel won a Munster Senior Hurling Medal in 2009, scoring 0-13 in three matches in that year’s Munster championship. Noel won his second Munster Senior Hurling medal in 2011.

 

Noel won the RTE man of the match award in the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling semi-final versus Waterford, scoring 7 points, 5 from play in the centre-forward position. Noel won an All-Ireland Senior Hurling medal in 2010, scoring a goal in the final against Kilkenny. Noel won an All-Ireland Under 21 Hurling medal in 2010, scoring 1-3 in the All-Ireland final defeat of Galway. Noel won the 2010 GAA Player of the Month award for August, sponsored by Vodafone. The award followed McGrath’s stunning display in Tipp’s impressive 3-19 to 1-18 victory over Waterford. McGrath hit five outstanding points from play against the Deise as he won a crucial battle against Michael ‘Brick’ Walsh.

 

Noel lined out with the Tipperary Minor Hurlers for three seasons, winning All-Ireland medals in 2006 and 2007, a Munster Minor medal in 2007 and a Munster Under 21 Hurling medal in 2010. Noel won the RTE man of the match award in the 2007 All-Ireland semi-final victory over Kilkenny. He played an impressive role as a second half substitute at wing-back in the 2006 All-Ireland semi-final defeat over Kilkenny. In all, Noel played 11 Championship matches for the Tipperary Minor hurlers, scoring 1-34 (0-15 frees, 0-2 sideline cuts, 1-17 from play) in total.

 

Noel won an All-Ireland Under 16 Hurling medal in 2006 and a Dean Ryan Cup medal with Our Lady’s Templemore in 2007. Noel helped his club to win County and Munster Club Senior Hurling medals in 2007 and won a Mid Senior Hurling medal in 2011. Noel’s father Pat played for Tipperary at Minor, Under 21 and Senior level. Noel won All-Star awards in 2009 (right corner-forward) and 2010 (centre-forward). Noel was also voted as the 2009 Young Hurler of the Year. His first cousin Liam McGrath is captain of the Tipperary minor football team which has qualified for this year’s All Ireland final and his brother, John is also on the panel.

 

Championship debut – 2009 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 15

Scored – 2-41

________________________________________

 

Shane McGrath (Ballinahinch)

 

Age 26 Height 5ft 11in Weight 12st 9lbs Occupation: Primary School Teacher

 

Shane was born on September 12th, 1984 and plays for the Ballinahinch club in North Tipperary. Shane won a Munster Under 21 Hurling medal with Tipperary in 2004 as a substitute and he started at wing-forward against Down in the 2005 All-Ireland Under 21 Hurling semi-final. Shane won Fitzgibbon Cup medals with Limerick Institute of Technology in 2005 and 2007.

 

Shane made his National Hurling League debut for the Tipperary Senior Hurling team at wing-forward against Limerick in February 2006. Shane made his championship debut at midfield against Limerick in the first round of the 2006 Munster championship. Shane played with Munster hurlers in the 2006, 2007 and 2009 Inter Provincial Championships, winning a medal in 2007 at right half forward. Shane won a National Hurling League medal at midfield in 2008, scoring a point in the final and ten points during the 2008 NHL campaign. Shane has won 3 Munster Senior Hurling medals. Shane lined out at midfield for the Tipperary Senior Hurlers in 2010 as they captured All-Ireland honours, defeating Kilkenny in the final. Shane was selected at midfield in the 2008 All-Star team and was an All Star nominee in 2009 and 2010.

 

Championship debut – 2006 vs. Limerick

Number of Appearances – 28

Scored – 0-20

________________________________________

 

Paddy Murphy (Nenagh Éire Óg)

 

Age 21 Height 6ft 2in Weight 13st 13lbs Occupation: Student, UL

 

Paddy plays for the Nenagh Eire Óg club and was born on March 26th 1990. Paddy won an All-Ireland minor hurling medal with Tipperary in 2007 and won Munster and All Ireland under 21 hurling medals in 2010. Paddy won a Munster Senior Hurling medal in 2011.

 

Paddy made his National Hurling League debut against Wexford in this year’s Allianz Hurling League. He won a North SHC medal with Nenagh Eire Óg in 2009. Paddy is a student in UL and played on their Fitzgibbon cup team in 2011 as they won the title.

________________________________________

 

 

John O’Brien (Toomevara)

 

Age 29 Height 6ft 2in Weight 13st 7lbs Occupation: Sales Rep

 

John was born on January 1st 1982 and plays for the Toomevara club. He made his Senior inter-county debut vs. Laois in the 2001 National League. John has won a Munster minor hurling medal (1999), an All-Ireland Senior Hurling medal (2001), 4 Munster Senior medals (2001, 2008, 2009, 2011) and a Munster Under 21 hurling medal (2003). John won the RTE Man of the Match award in the 2008 Munster Senior Hurling Final, scoring 1-4 from wing-forward. John lined out at corner-forward for the Tipperary Senior Hurling team which won the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling title, scoring 2 points from play in the final.

 

John has won 7 County medals with Toomevara and 2 Munster Club medals in 2004 and 2006. He is a brother of Paddy who first made an appearance on the Tipp team in 2000. John won the man of the match award in the 2000, 2001 and 2006 County Senior Hurling Finals, scoring 2-1, 1-5 and 1-6 respectively. John won a National Hurling League medal as a second half forward substitute in 2008. John was nominated for an All-Star in 2010.

 

Championship debut – 2001 vs. Limerick

Number of Appearances – 26

Scored – 2-35

________________________________________

 

John O’Keeffe (Clonoulty Rossmore)

 

Age 22 Height 5ft 10in Weight 12st 8lbs Occupation: Student, LIT

 

John was born on November 17th 1988 and is a member of the Clonoulty-Rossmore GAA club. John won an All-Ireland Minor Hurling medal with Tipperary in 2006 and played Under 21 Hurling for the county for 3 years (2007 to 2009), winning a Munster Under 21 Hurling medal in 2008. John won a Munster Senior Hurling medal in 2011, lining out a right half-back in the Munster Final victory over Waterford. John is a student at the Limerick Institute of Technology and was a member of their 2010/2011 Fitzgibbon Cup team.

 

John made his National Hurling League debut at wing-back against Waterford in March 2011. John’s Championship debut came against Cork in the first round of the 2011 Munster Senior Hurling Championship.

 

Championship debut – 2011 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 4

________________________________________

 

Brian O’Meara (Kilruane MacDonaghs)

 

Age 21 Height 6ft 2in Weight 15st 2lbs Occupation: Student, WIT

 

Brian “Buggy” O’Meara plays for the Kilruane MacDonaghs GAA club. Brian was a member of the County Minor Hurling panel in 2008 and won Munster Under 21 medals in Hurling and Football in 2010, lining out at full-forward in both finals, winning the man of the match award in the Munster Under 21 Hurling Final. Brian made his Senior Hurling Inter-County Championship debut against Cork in May 2010. Brian made his National Hurling League debut as a second half substitute against Kilkenny in February 2011. Brian won a Munster Senior Hurling medal in 2011. Brian lined out at full-forward in the 2010 All-Ireland Under 21 Hurling Final, scoring 1-3 and winning the man of the match award. Brian was shortlisted for the 2010 Bord Gáis Energy Breaking Through Player of the Year award. Brian was a member of the 2010 Tipperary Senior Hurling panel which won All-Ireland honours.

 

Championship debut – 2010 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 3

________________________________________

 

John O’Neill

 

Age 21 Height 5ft 7in Weight 12st 8lbs Occupation: Student

 

John was born on July 13th 1990 and is a member of the Clonoulty-Rossmore GAA club. John played Minor Hurling for Tipperary in 2007 and 2008, winning Munster and All-Ireland Minor Hurling medals in 2007. John played with the Tipperary Under 21 Hurlers in 2009 and 2010, winning Munster and All-Ireland medals in 2010. John won a Munster Senior Hurling medal in 2011. John made his National Hurling League debut for Tipperary at right corner-forward against Kilkenny in February 2011, scoring 1 point from play. John made his Championship debut against Dublin as a substitute in the 2011 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Semi-Final.

 

Championship debut – 2011 vs. Dublin

Number of Appearances – 1

________________________________________

 

Gearóid Ryan (Templederry Kenyons)

 

Age 23 Height 5ft 9in Weight 12st 12lbs Occupation: Plumber

 

Gearoid was born on August 26th, 1988. Gearoid plays for the Templederry Kenyons club. Gearoid made his National Hurling League debut against Cork in February 2009, scoring a point from play. Gearoid won an All-Ireland Minor Hurling medal with Tipperary in 2006, lining out at midfield in the final. Gearoid was also on the Tipperary Intermediate Hurling panel in 2007 and 2008 Gearoid was part of the Tipperary Under 21 Hurling panel in 2007, 2008 and 2009, winning a Munster medal in 2008. Gearoid made his Championship debut as a substitute against Cork in the 2009 Munster Senior Hurling Championship. Gearoid has won 2 Munster Senior Hurling medals. Gearoid Ryan won the man of the match award in the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Quarter-Final against Galway, scoring 1-2 from play. Gearoid played wing-forward on the Tipperary team which captured the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling title, scoring a point in the final. Gearoid was nominated for an All-Star award in 2010 in the half-forward line.

 

Championship debut – 2009 vs. Cork

Number of Appearances – 12

Scored – 1-15

________________________________________

 

Paddy Stapleton (Borris-Ileigh)

 

Age 26 Height 5ft 10in Weight 12st 2lbs Occupation: Student UL

 

Paddy was born on August 3rd, 1985. Paddy plays for the Borris-Ileigh club and made his Senior competitive debut for Tipperary in the 2006 Waterford Crystal Shield against Waterford. Paddy made his National League debut against Limerick in 2008 coming on as a substitute. Paddy won a Munster Under 21 Hurling medal in 2006 at right corner-back and won a Munster Minor Hurling medal in 2003, lining out at centre-back. Paddy won a National Hurling League medal as a substitute in 2008. Paddy has won 3 Munster Senior Hurling medals. Paddy made his Championship debut as a blood substitute in the 2008 All-Ireland Semi-Final against Waterford. Paddy made his first Championship start at right corner-back in the 2009 Munster Senior Hurling Championship vs. Cork. Paddy lined out at right corner back in the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Final victory over Kilkenny. Paddy has won 2 North Senior Hurling medals with his club in 2005 and 2007. Paddy was nominated for an All-Star award in 2009 and 2010 at corner-back.

 

Championship debut – 2008 vs. Waterford

Number of Appearances – 15

________________________________________

 

Thomas Stapleton (Templederry Kenyons)

 

Age 23 Height 6ft 1in Weight 13st 7lbs Occupation: Office administrator

 

Thomas was born on February 21st, 1988 and plays with the Templederry Kenyons club. Thomas played at wing-back for the 2005 Tipperary Minor team before moving to centre-back in 2006 as Tipperary won the All-Ireland title. Thomas’s father Michael won an All-Ireland Minor Hurling medal in 1976. Thomas made his League debut for Tipperary against Dublin in the 2007 National Hurling League scoring a point from midfield. Thomas made his Championship debut as a substitute in the first replay against Limerick in the 2007 Munster Senior Hurling Semi-Final. Thomas won a National Hurling League medal as a substitute in 2008 and he won a Munster Under 21 Hurling medal in the same year lining out at centre-back. Thomas has won 3 Munster Senior Hurling medals. Thomas played for the Tipperary Intermediate Hurlers in 2011 against Cork, lining out at centre-back.

 

Championship debut – 2007 vs. Limerick (1st replay)

Number of Appearances – 4

________________________________________

 

James Woodlock (Drom and Inch)

 

Age 25 Height 5ft 10in Weight 12st 6lbs Occupation: Garda

 

James was born on March 24th, 1986 and is from the Drom & Inch club. He spent most of the 2010 season recovering from a serious leg break which he incurred in the 2009 Tipperary County Senior Hurling final. James won a Munster Minor Hurling medal in 2003 and a Munster Under 21 Hurling medal in 2006. James won Mid Senior Hurling titles in 2006, 2008 and 2009. James lined out for the Garda College in the 2006 Fitzgibbon Cup competition. James made his National Hurling League debut as a substitute against Limerick in February 2006. His championship debut came when he lined out at midfield against Limerick in the first drawn game in the 2007 Munster semi-final, scoring 2 points from play. James won a National Hurling League medal playing at wing-forward in 2008. James has won 3 Munster Senior Hurling medals.

 

Championship debut – 2007 vs. Limerick (first drawn game)

Number of Appearances – 13

Scored – 0-6

________________________________________

 

David Young (Toomevara)

 

Age 26 Height 6ft Weight 14st 5lbs Occupation: Sec School Teacher

 

David was born on July 13th 1985. David won a Munster minor hurling title in 2003 and an under 21 title as captain in 2006. He joined the Senior Hurling panel in 2010. David made his National Hurling League debut vs. Limerick in March 2010. David made his Championship debut against Wexford in the 2010 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Qualifiers, scoring 3 points from right half back in a man of the match performance. He has won 4 county senior hurling titles with his club, 2 Munster club championships (2004 and 2006) and 1 county under 21 championship. David won a Munster Senor Hurling medal in 2011.

 

Championship debut – 2010 vs. Wexford

Number of Appearances – 6

Scored – 0-4

________________________________________

Photographs of all the Tipperary players can be found on the Tipperary GAA web site – click on the following link to view this information –

http://tipperary.gaa.ie/seniorhurlingplayerprofiles.html

________________________________________

Management Profiles

Declan Ryan (Clonoulty Rossmore), Tommy Dunne (Toomevara) and Michael Gleeson (Thurles Sarsfields) are in their first season in charge of the Tipperary Senior Hurling team.

Declan Ryan was Manager of the Tipperary minor hurling team in 2007 when they won the All-Ireland title. Tommy Dunne was coach and Michael Gleeson was a selector. Tommy Dunne was coach to the Tipperary U-21 team which won last year’s All Ireland title and was also Manager of the Toomevara senior hurling team last year. Michael Gleeson managed Thurles Sarsfields to victory in the Tipperary senior hurling championship in 2009 and 2010 and has also managed Thurles Sarsfields minor teams to win county titles in both hurling and football.

Declan Ryan won three All Ireland senior hurling medals with Tipperary in 1989, 1991 and 2001. He played 41 championship games for Tipperary between 1988 and 2001, scoring 9-64 in 26 wins, 4 draws and 11 defeats. He represented Tipperary at minor and under 21 levels and captained the under 21 team to win Munster and All Ireland titles in 1989. He also won 4 National Hurling League medals, 5 Munster senior hurling championship medals, 2 All Star awards and 2 county senior hurling championship medals with his club, Clonoulty Rossmore, in 1989 and 1997.

Tommy Dunne captained Tipperary to win the All-Ireland senior hurling title in 2001 and was named Hurler of the Year in 2001. He played 44 championship games for Tipperary between 1993 and 2005, scoring 6-109 in 24 wins, 4 draws and 16 defeats. He won an All-Ireland under 21 hurling medal in 1995 and also represented Tipperary at minor in 1991 and 1992. He won 10 Tipperary county senior hurling championships with his club, Toomevara, including 2 as captain and 3 Munster club championship medals. He also won 3 National Hurling League medals, 2 as captain, 2 Munster senior hurling championship medals, a Munster minor championship medal and 3 All Star awards.

Michael Gleeson played senior hurling for Tipperary against Clare in the 1977 Munster senior hurling championship. He also played in the 1975/76 and 76/77 National Hurling Leagues. He played senior hurling with Thurles Sarsfields for 10 years between 1974 and 1983, winning a county championship medal in 1974 and 3 Mid Division senior hurling medals. He began his career in team management with the Durlas Óg club in Thurles and has made a major contribution to the recent revival in the fortunes of Thurles Sarsfields at underage and adult level.

Trainer

Dr. Cian O’Neill from the Moorefield Club in Kildare and a lecturer and course director in Sports Science in University of Limerick (UL) is in his fourth year as the team trainer. He has extensive experience training and coaching club, colleges and inter-county teams including the Limerick senior footballers and Kildare minor footballers.

Tipperary in 2011 Championship

Tipperary Path to Final:

Tipperary 1-19 Dublin 0-18 Croke Park All Ireland SHC S/f 14/8/11

Tipperary 7-19 Waterford 0-19 Páirc Uí Chaoimh Munster SHC Final 10/7/11

Tipperary 4-19 Clare 1-19 Páirc na nGael, Limerick Munster SHC S/F 19/6/11

Tipperary 3-22 Cork 0-23 Semple Stadium Munster SHC Q/F 29/5/11

Tipperary team v Dublin 14/8/11

 

Tipperary: B Cummins; P Stapleton, P Curran, M Cahill; J O’Keeffe, C O’Mahony, Padraic Maher; G Ryan, S McGrath; N McGrath, S Callanan, Patrick Maher; E Kelly (capt), J O’Brien, L Corbett.

 

Subs: B Maher for Callanan (h-t), P Bourke for Patrick Maher (56), B O’Meara for Ryan (65), S Bourke for Kelly (69), J O’Neill for O’Brien (72). T Stapleton (blood sub) for P Stapleton (first half).

 

Scorers: E Kelly 0-6 (2f, 3 ’65s’), L Corbett 1-3, N McGrath 0-3 (1 s/l), Padraic Maher, G Ryan 0-2 each, S Callanan, P Bourke (f), S McGrath 0-1 each

 

Tipperary team v Waterford 10/7/11

 

Tipperary: B Cummins; P Stapleton, P Curran, M Cahill; J O’Keeffe, C O’Mahony, Padraic Maher; G Ryan, S McGrath; S Callanan, N McGrath, Patrick Maher; E Kelly (capt), J O’Brien, L Corbett.

 

Subs: B Maher for O’Keeffe (35+1 mins-half-time, blood sub), P Bourke for Callanan (50), B Dunne for Ryan (54), S Bourke for N McGrath (61), B Maher for Padraic Maher (63), D Gleeson for Cummins (64).

 

Scorers: L Corbett 4-4, E Kelly 2-6 (0-3f), S Callanan 1-0, J O’Brien 0-3, N McGrath (0-1sl), P Bourke 0-2 each, G Ryan, S Bourke 0-1 each

 

Tipperary team v Clare 19/6/11

 

Tipperary: B Cummins; J O’Keeffe, P Curran, M Cahill; D Young, C O’Mahony, Padraic Maher; G Ryan, S McGrath; S Callanan, N McGrath, Patrick Maher; E Kelly, J O’Brien, L Corbett.

 

Subs: S Lillis for Young (h-t), P Stapleton for O’Keeffe (h-t), P Bourke for O’Brien, J Woodlock for Ryan (62), J Coghlan for Curran (70).

 

Scorers: S Callanan 1-5, E Kelly 1-3 (2f), N McGrath 0-3, Patrick Maher, L Corbett 1-0 each, Padraic Maher, G Ryan, S McGrath, P Bourke all 0-2 each.

 

Tipperary team v Cork 29/5/11

 

Tipperary: B Cummins; P Stapleton, P Curran, M Cahill; D Young, Pádraic Maher, J O’Keeffe; G Ryan, S McGrath; S Callanan, N McGrath, Patrick Maher; E Kelly, J O’Brien, L Corbett.

 

Subs: J Woodlock for S McGrath ’40, C O’Mahony for Young ’59, B Dunne for O’Brien ’62, P Bourke for Ryan ’66.

 

Scorers: E Kelly 1-07 (0-5f), L Corbett 1-2, S Callanan 0-5, N McGrath 0-4 (0-2 sl), B Dunne 1-0, J O’Brien 0-2, Patrick Maher 0-1, J Woodlock 0-1.

Appearances

27 players lined out for Tipperary during the 4 championship matches to date

Scorers

13 players have scored to date in the championship as follows:

Eoin Kelly (4-22) Lar Corbett (7-9), Seamus Callanan (2-11), Noel McGrath (0-12), Gearóid Ryan (0-5), John O’Brien (0-5), Pa Bourke (0-5), Padraic Maher (0-4), Patrick Maher (1-1), Benny Dunne (1-0), Shane McGrath (0-3), Shane Bourke (0-1), James Woodlock (0-1).

Tipperary have scored 15-79 and conceded 1-79 in this year’s championship.

Tipperary V Kilkenny: Previous Championship Meetings

Tipperary and Kilkenny have met 21 times previously in the championship with Tipperary winning 13 times, Kilkenny 8 times and no draws.

Date Stage Result Tipp Top Scorer

2010 All Ireland Final Tipperary 4-17

Kilkenny 1-18 Lar Corbett

3-0

 

2009 All Ireland Final Kilkenny 2-22

Tipperary 0-23

Eoin Kelly

0-13

2003 All Ireland Semi-final Kilkenny 3 -18

Tipperary 0-15 Eoin Kelly

0-8

 

2002 All Ireland Semi-final Kilkenny 1-20

Tipperary 1-16 Eoin Kelly

0-4

 

1991 All Ireland Final Tipperary 1-16

Kilkenny 0-15 Michael Cleary

1-6

 

1971 All Ireland Final Tipperary 5-17

Kilkenny 5-14 Michael “Babs” Keating 0-7

 

1967 All Ireland Final Kilkenny 3-8

Tipperary 2-7 Donie Nealon

2-0

 

1964 All Ireland Final Tipperary 5-13

Kilkenny 2-8 Jimmy Doyle

0-10

 

1958 All Ireland Semi-final Tipperary 1-13

Kilkenny 1-8 Jimmy Doyle

1-8

 

1950 All Ireland Final Tipperary 1-9

Kilkenny 1-8 Paddy Kenny

1-2

 

1945 All Ireland Final Tipperary 5-6

Kilkenny 3-6 Eddie Gleeson

2-0

 

1937 All Ireland Final

(played in Killarney) Tipperary 3-11

Kilkenny 0-3

Denis “Bunny” Murphy

2-0

 

 

1922 All Ireland Final Kilkenny 4-2

Tipperary 2-6

Paddy Power

2-0

1916

All Ireland Final Tipperary (Boherlahan) 5-4 Kilkenny (Tullaroan) 3-2

 

1913 All Ireland Final

(first 15 a side final) Kilkenny (Mooncoin) 2-4

Tipperary (Toomevara) 1-2

 

1911 All Ireland Final

(Limerick withdrew and Tipp were nominated to replace them in an unofficial final)

Kilkenny (Tullaroan) 3-3

Tipperary(Thurles) 1-2

1909 All Ireland Final

Kilkenny (Mooncoin) 4-6

Tipperary (Thurles) 0-12

Patsy Brolan

0-4

1900 All Ireland Semi-Final

Tipperary (Two Mile Borris) 1-11

Kilkenny (Mooncoin) 1-8

 

1898 All Ireland Final

Tipperary (Tubberadora) 7-13

Kilkenny (Threecastles) 3-10

1895 All Ireland Final

Tipperary (Tubberadora) 6-8

Kilkenny (Tullaroan) 1-0

First final at Jones Road

1887 All Ireland Semi-Final

Tipperary (Thurles) 4-7

Kilkenny (Tuillaroan) 0-0

Last Championship Meetings

All Ireland SH Final September 5th 2010

Tipperary 4-17 Kilkenny 1-18

Tipperary: Brendan Cummins (0-1); Paddy Stapleton, Paul Curran, Michael Cahill; Declan Fanning, Conor O’Mahony, Padraic Maher; Brendan Maher (0-2), Shane McGrath; Gearóid Ryan (0-1), Patrick Maher, John O’Brien (0-2); Noel McGrath (1-0), Eoin Kelly (0-7), Lar Corbett (3-0).

Subs: Conor O’Brien for O’Mahony (57), Seamus Callanan (0-2) for John O’Brien (58), Benny Dunne (0-1) for McGrath (62), David Young for Fanning (68), Seamus Hennessy (0-1) for B Maher (69).

Kilkenny: PJ Ryan; John Dalton, Noel Hickey, Jackie Tyrrell; Tommy Walsh, John Tennyson, JJ Delaney; James ‘Cha’ Fitzpatrick, Michael Fennelly; TJ Reid (0-4), Henry Shefflin (0-1), Eoin Larkin; Eddie Brennan, Richie Power (1-9), Aidan Fogarty (0-1).

Subs: Michael Rice (0-1) for Shefflin (13), Derek Lyng (0-1) for Fitzpatrick (51), Martin Comerford for Brennan (51), Richie Hogan for Fogarty (55), John Mulhall (0-1) for Reid (62).

Referee: M Wadding (Waterford) Attendance: 81,765

 

 

All Ireland SH Final September 6th 2009

 

Kilkenny 2-22 Tipperary 0-23

 

Kilkenny: PJ Ryan; M Kavanagh, JJ Delaney, J Tyrrell (0-1); T Walsh (0-1), B Hogan, J Tennyson; D Lyng (0-1), M Rice; R Hogan (0-2), H Shefflin (1-9, 0-8f, 1-0 pen), E Larkin (0-3); E Brennan (0-2), R Power (0-1), A Fogarty.

 

Subs: TJ Reid (0-1) for A Fogarty ’50, M Fennelly (0-1) for D Lyng ’50, M Comerford (1-0) for R Hogan ’55.

 

Tipperary: B Cummins; P Stapleton, P Maher, P Curran; D Fanning, C O’Mahony, B Maher; J Woodlock, S McGrath (0-1); P Kerwick, S Callanan (0-3), J O’Brien; N McGrath (0-2), E Kelly (0-13, 0-8f, 0-3 ’65), L Corbett (0-4).

 

Subs: B Dunne for J O’Brien ’47, W Ryan for P Kerwick ’66, M Webster for J Woodlock ’68.

 

Referee: D Kirwan (Cork) Attendance: 82,106

Snippets

Club Representation on Tipperary Panel

The 31 players on the Tipperary Senior Hurling panel represent 18 clubs between them as follows:

Thurles Sarsfields – 6, Toomevara – 3, Borris-Ileigh – 2, Clonoulty Rossmore – 2, Drom and Inch – 2, Kilruane MacDonaghs – 2, Mullinahone – 2, Templederry Kenyons – 2, Ballinahinch – 1, Ballybacon Grange – 1, JK Brackens – 1, Killenaule – 1, Loughmore-Castleiney – 1, Lorrha and Dorrha – 1, Moyne –Templetuohy – 1, Nenagh Éire Óg – 1, Newport – 1, Portroe – 1.

Average Age of Tipperary Players

The average age of the Tipperary panel is 24 years and 9 months. The average age of the last year’s panel was 25 years and 8 months. Brendan Cummins is the oldest player on the Tipperary panel aged 36 years and 4 months. Noel McGrath is the youngest at 20 years and 9 months.

3 Years in a Row

The last time Tipperary appeared in an All-Ireland final for the third year in succession was in 1962 when they defeated Wexford by 3-10 to 2-11. In 1961 they defeated Dublin by 0-16 to 1-12 and in 1960 they lost to Wexford by 2-15 to 0-11.

Same finalists 3 in a row

It is the first time since 1903 that the same opponents will meet for the 3rd year in a row in the All-Ireland final. Cork and London met in 1901, 02 and 03 with London winning in 01 and Cork in 02 and 03. One important distinction is that London automatically qualified for the final in those days.

Best attended Tipp v Kilkenny championship games

2009 Final 82,106

2010 Final 81,765

1964 Final 71,282.

1945 Final 69,459

1950 Final 67,629

1991 Final 64,500

1967 Final 64,241

1971 Final 61,393

2003 Semi Final 60,087

First and Last

When Kilkenny beat Tipperary in the 1922 Final, played on September 9th 1923, it was the last occasion that the counties played without numbers on their jerseys. If identification wasn’t hard enough, many of the players wore caps in the fashion of the time. Played with the Tipperary v Sligo All Ireland Football Semi Final of 1922, the crowd was calculated at 26,000. Kilkenny’s two late goals by Paddy O’Donoghue and Dick Tobin won the day, after the teams had been level at half time. Team captain, Wattie Dunphy, became the first Kilkenny man to receive the Liam MacCarthy cup.

Only Once

Tipperary have won 26 All Ireland titles and lost 10 finals, but despite several close games, the Premier County has only once featured in a drawn Final – 1908 against Dublin. There has never been a drawn championship game, between Tipperary and Kilkenny.

Half Full

Tipperary / Kilkenny Finals are generally hard won but a good first half sets the tone. In the 15 Finals between the counties (excluding the substitute contest in 1911, when Limerick withdrew) Tipperary won 10 and Kilkenny 5. Only twice in those Finals, did the team which led at half time, lose the match. Tipperary won eight finals (1895, 1898, 1916, 1937, 1945, 1964, 1971, 2010) having led at half time, one after being level at the break (1991) and one (1950) despite Kilkenny leading at half way. Kilkenny won three (1909, 1913, 2009) after going in ahead at half time, one (1967) after trailing and one (1922) from a half time position of equality.

Tourist trail

In the earlier years of Tipp /Kilkenny rivalry, supporters travelled to some unusual venues but they were probably practical at the time, insofar as public transport often determined where people could go, while bicycles and the ass and cart were used for shorter journeys. The first meeting –an All-Ireland Semi Final (1887 c/ship) was played at Urlingford, in North West Kilkenny. The 1900 Semi Final went to Carrick on Suir, in South East Tipperary. The 1909 Final was played in Cork, with the unofficial 1911 game sited in Dungarvan. The picturesque Killarney played host for the 1937 Final when a builders’ strike delayed construction of the Cusack Stand at Croke Park. Apart from those all other Championship meetings between the counties have been played at Croke Park or, as it was previously named, Jones’ Road.

Easy in Munster but not outside it

On 17 occasions between 1960 and 2010, a county won the Munster Final, by eight points or more, but failed to add the All-Ireland title. On eight occasions, the winner fell at the semi-final stage and on nine occasions the Munster Champion lost in the All-Ireland Final.

Summary by county;

Tipperary:

1967 beat Clare in Munster Final by 12 points …..lost All Ireland Final to Kilkenny by 4 points

1968 Cork by 9 points …….lost All Ireland Final to Wexford by 2 points

1987 Cork by 9 points …….lost All Irl Semi Final to Galway by 6 points

1988 Cork by 9 points …….lost All Ireland Final to Galway by 4 points

1993 Clare by 18 points……lost All Irl Semi Final to Galway by 2 points

2008 Clare by 8 points …….lost All Irl Semi Final to Waterford by 2 points

 

Cork

1969 beat Tipp in Munster Final by 9 points….lost All Ireland Final to Kilkenny by 6 points

1972 Clare by 22 points …lost All Ireland Final to Kilkenny by 7 points

1975 Limerick by 11 points….lost All Irl Semi-final to Galway by 2 points

1979 Limerick by 11points ….lost All Irl Semi Final to Galway by 4 points

1982 Waterford by 31 points …lost All Ireland Final to Kilkenny by 11 points

1983 Waterford by 19 points ….lost All Ireland Final to Kilkenny by 2 points

 

Limerick

1974 beat Clare in Munster Final by 14 points…lost All Ireland Final to Kilkenny by 12 points

1994 Clare by 9 points …lost All Ireland Final to Offaly by 6 points

 

Waterford

2002 beat Tipperary in Munster Final by 8 points….lost All Irl Semi Final to Clare by 3 points

2007 Limerick by 9 points …lost All Irl Semi Final to Limerick by 5 points

 

Clare

1998 beat Waterford in Munster Final by 12 points…lost All Irl Semi Final to Offaly by 3 points

 

Both Sides

The last hurler to play in the Senior Championship with Tipperary and Kilkenny was Denis Byrne (Graigue/Ballycallan (Kilkenny) & Mullinahone (Tipperary). Having played with Kilkenny and captained them to the Leinster title in 1999, he changed club and county allegiance in 2003, making his championship debut for Tipperary v. Laois, at Portlaoise, in a qualifier game on June 14th. Denis lined out at full forward and scored 0-6. He also played against Galway in the next round and came on as a substitute against Offaly in the Quarter Final victory at Croke Park. He didn’t play against Kilkenny in the semi-final.

Winning the Toss – point to ponder

Tipp have won 3 of their last five All Ireland titles playing into Hill 16 in 2nd half. Kilkenny have won 4 of their last five titles ditto. Five of the last eight c/ship meetings between the counties have been won ditto.

Dethroning the champions

When Kilkenny met Tipp in the 1964 All Ireland final they were defending the title, won against Waterford in a high scoring decider (4-17 to 6-8) the previous year. The Leinster champions were favourites to win the game, but were beaten by double scores 5-13 to 2-8. Tipperary led by 1-8 to 0-6 at half time. The game was refereed by Aubrey Higgins from Galway – the last time a Connacht man refereed the All-Ireland final. Tipperary had previously dethroned Kilkenny in the 1958 semi-final, again after the black and amber had beaten Waterford in the previous decider. Tipperary’s win last year was their third time to dethrone Kilkenny.

Kilkenny have dethroned Tipperary on two occasions, the 1909 Final and the 2002 All Ireland semi-final.

Hurling Hotbed

During his time as a student, at St Kieran’s College, Kilkenny, Eoin Kelly played in two Colleges’ All Ireland Finals. Despite scoring 1-7 in the 1999 final at Croke Park, he lost to a St Flannan’s College team, captained by Ballinahinch’s Dermot Gleeson and powered by Toomevara’s Benny Dunne, who scored 0-3. There was a happy ending to the 2000 Final at Nenagh, when Eoin, who lined out at centre forward and scored 0-7, avenged the previous year’s defeat. His colleagues on that winning team included current Kilkenny senior hurlers Tommy Walsh, Brian Hogan, Jackie Tyrrell and Michael Rice, who is now a teacher in the college.

Golden Gate

Tipperary’s victory over Kilkenny in the 1950 decider might not have produced the highest final attendance but the gate receipts of £6,103 -14 -2 set a new record for a hurling final.

Overdrawn

It is fifty two years since the All-Ireland Hurling final ended in a draw and it was a Waterford man, Seamus Power, a North Tipp Senior Hurling Championship winner with Roscrea in 1949 who scored the equalising goal. The Decies beat Kilkenny in the 1959 Final replay by 3-12 to 1-10 for their last All Ireland success.

A Star Trio of Counties

The late Mick Ryan (Roscrea) won a Kilkenny County Senior Hurling title with Dicksboro in 1950. They beat Éire Óg (city) in a final replay by 4-6 to 1-5. He lined out at centre forward in the club’s first victory for twenty four years. His team mates included Dan Kennedy, who had faced Mick in the All-Ireland final a couple of months earlier. Mick died in 2007, but is remembered fondly in Tipperary, Kilkenny and Cork, where he played successfully with Blackrock and St. Finbarrs in hurling and Clonakilty in football.

Marksmen Supreme

When you consider that Kilkenny’s Eddie Keher shot an amazing 0-14 in the sixty minute 1963 All Ireland Final against Waterford, it was always possible that he would surpass it in the years ahead. The introduction of the eighty minute games (1970) improved his chances and in the 1971 Final against Tipperary, Eddie scored 2-11 in Kilkenny’s three point loss to establish a new record. The games were reduced to seventy minutes for the 1975 championship and it took a tour de force from Nicky English in the 1989 Final when he scored 2-12 against Antrim to break Keher’s eighteen year old record. Eoin Kelly’s performance in the 2009 70 minute final with 0-13 is very worthy of mention among impressive final scoring achievements.

Final referees

Both counties have provided several referees for the All-Ireland Senior Hurling final and the details are-

Tipperary -

Seamus Roche 2005

Willie Barrett 1994 & 2000

George Ryan 1979 & 1985

John Moloney 1974

Bob Stakelum 1955

Phil Purcell 1947

Willie O’ Donnell 1941

JJ Callanan 1940

 

Kilkenny-

Paschal Long 1984

Paddy Johnson 1976

Jack Mulcahy 1954

John Lalor 1914

John Mc Carthy 1900, 01 & 03

 

JJ Callanan was the only All-Ireland winning captain (1930), who also refereed an All-Ireland Final.

Middle man

The appointment of Offaly’s Brian Gavin to referee the All-Ireland final had been anticipated since early season. Several impressive performances in the championship, including Tipperary’s games against Cork and Waterford, made his selection easier. Brian’s pathway to the big day has touched all of the milestones, with All Ireland Final appointments at Minor level ( 2004) Under 21 (2006) , Munster Senior Finals (2010/2011), All Ireland Quarter Finals, Semi Finals and last year he was standby referee/linesman for the Final.

Unusually, the competitive 2011 season started with a Tipperary v Kilkenny Allianz NHL game at Semple Stadium on February 12th last and it will finish with the same pairing trying to win the Mac Carthy Cup. Brian Gavin also refereed the NHL game and now he is preparing for the biggest assignment of his career.

 

Brian’s club, Clara, is steeped in GAA history and was established a mere six weeks after the GAA itself held its foundation meeting, in the billiard room of Lizzy Hayes’ Hotel, in Thurles.

 

Offaly has produced its fair share of All Ireland Hurling Final referees over the years, with John Dowling, who was Uachtaran CLCG 1988-1991 probably the most famous.

 

The Faithful county’s Final referees were;

 

1887 Pat White (a native of Blakefield, Toomevara, based in Birr and representing Offaly).

1928/1929/1931(draw and first replay) Sean Robbins

1937/1939 Jim Flaherty

1953 Pat Connell

1958 Matt Spain

1960/1962/1968 John Dowling

1972 Mick Spain

1988 Gerry Kirwan

1996 Pat Horan

2009 Diarmuid Kirwan (a native of Ballyskenagh, based in Ovens and representing Cork, son of 88 final referee, Gerry).

Hard to believe

These days All Ireland Hurling Semi Finals are played at Croke Park (the last exception was the Offaly v Clare Saturday refixture in 1998, which was played at Semple Stadium).

So, it is hard to believe that the first ever championship meeting, between Tipperary and Kilkenny, was played at Urlingford on October 27th 1887. That Semi Final was played on a Thursday and the reason was that when the teams went to Clonmel to play the game on the previous Sunday, other games were in progress and planned as the South Tipperary Board was in dispute with the Central Council. In the circumstances, the teams arranged to play on the following Thursday in Urlingford. Interestingly, Tullaroan objected to some of the Thurles players before the game started on the grounds that they were not from the parish. This was accepted but Thurles had no difficulty getting replacements from among their supporters. There were plenty willing to take the place of those who could not play. It was reported that Frank Moloney ’’ refereed with much difficulty’’. The venue minimised travel for the teams, but you wonder how much difficulty players and supporters had in getting time off work, for the most important hurling game played in Ireland under the auspices of the GAA up to then.

Unsatisfactory Final

The 1895 All Ireland final, which was played at Jones’ Road, did not impress a writer from ‘‘The Freeman’s Journal ’’ whose report in their publication dated 16/3/1896, was as follows-

‘’There is not much to be said about the hurling match and for an All-Ireland championship, the display was a very poor one. This may be accounted for by the very weak team Tullaroan placed on the field and by the very unsuitable ground Jones’ Road is for hurling. The Tubberadora men proved themselves masters of the situation early in the match, a lengthy description of which is impossible, with such a score as

Tipperary 6 goals 8 points Kilkenny 1 goal.

JJ Kenny, Dublin, refereed to the entire satisfaction of all concerned”

While there was no account of who scored, the Tipperary GAA Yearbook 1971 offered this comment.

‘’It is said that JP O’ Riordan from Drombane registered all Tipperary’s scores in the 1895 All Ireland Final, when Tipperary beat Kilkenny 6-8 to 1-0, the largest margin between these famed rivals in a final.’’

Fourth Day

Tipperary and Kilkenny have never before played on September 4th. The counties have played in finals on September 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th and 9th. The 4th might serve as a warning to Tipperary, who previously lost finals on that date to Wexford (1960) and Galway (1988). Their only final win on that date was against Laois in 1949.

All Time Greats

Tipperary and Kilkenny were honoured in two selections of all time Hurling greats. In 1984, the Centenary Year of the GAA, a Hurling Team of The Century was selected. It included four Tipperary players –Tony Reddin, John Doyle, Jimmy Finn and Jimmy Doyle respectively. Kilkenny also had four players chosen – Paddy Phelan, Lory Meagher, Jim Langton and Eddie Keher.

In 2000, the GAA Hurling Team of the Millennium produced a Tipperary ‘loss’ of Jimmy Finn (1984) to Brian Whelehan (Offaly) , which reduced their number to three, while the Kilkenny quartet ‘retained’ their positions . So there it stands, until the next review !

Number Ones

While both Tipperary and Kilkenny have produced their fair share of hurling stylists , including tenacious defenders, competitive midfielders and deadly accurate forwards the quality of goalkeepers minding the net over the years has also been impressive.

Kilkenny produced the flamboyant Ollie Walsh from Thomastown, who not only won the Texaco Hurler of the Year Award in 1967, but inspired his team like nobody else. The late Ollie played against Tipperary in the 1964 ,1967 and 1971 finals and subsequently Managed his county to Senior All Ireland wins in 1992/93. He played 42 championship games for his county. His successor Noel Skehan captained Kilkenny to the All-Ireland title in 1972 and was Texaco Hurler of the Year in 1982 .The Bennettsbridge man also played 42 championship games for his county winning nine All Ireland Medals – six on the field of play.

James Mc Garry, who retired after the 2008 All Ireland Final, kept an amazing three clean sheets in All Ireland finals – no doubt inspired by the exploits and advice of his club mate Noel Skehan.

Tipperary’s number ones have earned their reputations nationally. Among them are:

Brendan Cummins from Ballybacon/Grange who recently set a new national record of 66 championship appearances and with 19 clean sheets, his value and inspiration have been critical since making his championship debut in 1995.

 

Ken Hogan from Lorrha was the championship goalkeeper from 1987 to 1993 and his second half save against Cork in the drawn Munster Final of 1987 ensured that Tipperary’s revival was not derailed. Ken, who won his first All-Ireland in 1989, kept a clean sheet in Tipp’s 1991 success over Kilkenny. He served as a selector when Tipperary won the 2001 All Ireland title and was Bainisteoir for the 2004 /2005 campaigns.

 

Tony Reddin also from Lorrha –and Galway’s gift to Tipp – was top man, when the Premier county won the three in a row, from 1949 to 1951. He was chosen on the Team of The Millennium and The Team of The Century, so his contribution is known to all. His performances in the hectic Munster championship games ,against Cork, secured his place in hurling folklore.

 

John O’Donoghue from Arravale Rovers, via UCC, was Tipperary’s championship goalkeeper from 1964 to 1970 inclusive. In 1964/65, he won every honour available with Tipperary and kept a clean sheet in the Munster and All Ireland finals of 1965. He was a selector, when Tipperary won the 1991 All Ireland final against Kilkenny. John was also the Tipperary football goalkeeper for many years.

 

James ‘Hawk’ O’ Brien from Thurles Blues and the All-Ireland Tipperary winning teams of 1906 & 1908, was reputed to have such a keen eye, that he could block grass seed ! Without the benefit of match footage, it is hard to be sure, but there is no doubt that he was the original HAWK EYE.

 

One for the Exiles

With so many people leaving Ireland once again to find work, the GAA abroad is growing stronger. There was a strong Tipperary presence when London’s latest hurling club made its debut on Sunday April 3rd 2011 in Mitcham. Five years since the establishment of their successful football club, Fulham Irish hurlers lined out against Clann na nGael – one of the longest established clubs in south London and managed for many years by Dualla native Tommy Dargan. Fulham Irish who become the fourth south London-based club are managed by former Sean Treacy’s stalwart Martin Carroll. The club is based in Earlsfield.. The Roscrea native, who has played for London for many years and is an uncle of former Tipperary All-Star hurler, John Carroll, said he was very encouraged by the reaction he has received since the club decided to affiliate a hurling team this year after five successful years as a football club which included reaching an All-Ireland club semi-final two years ago. Although the new club’s playing panel is drawn from a wide cross-section of counties there are a number from the Premier county including such as Ballingarry brothers, Declan and David O’Connell, Sean Purcell also from Ballingarry, Colm Kennedy (Cahir), Philip Dalton (Carrick-on-Suir) and Tom O’Keefe.

Minor Final Referee

For the first time since 1990 when Ardfinnan’s Willie Barrett was in charge, a Tipperary man will referee the All-Ireland minor final. Johnny Ryan of Boherlahan Dualla has deservedly been given the honour of taking charge of the much awaited clash between Dublin and Galway. Johnny’s umpires will be Willie Cross, Tony Lacey, Seamus Manton and JC Ryan.