Vincent Hogan: 13 years, 10 finals, 8 winners' medals, 3 career-threatening injuries, 2 tweets, but ...
Published 08/09/2012 | 05:00
ON the Wednesday evening before this year's National League final, Henry Shefflin had to abort a weights session in the Nowlan Park gym. Eoin Larkin and Jackie Tyrrell watched as he stepped from the machine ashen-faced and in palpable discomfort. Shefflin had yet to hurl this year, his recuperation from shoulder surgery in December proving dispiritingly slow and problematic.
That Sunday, he sat on the front steps of the old stand in Thurles alongside Michael Rice, Richie Power, Aidan Fogarty and Noel Hickey as Cork were ruthlessly obliterated in a final that, essentially, lasted just 10 minutes. At 33, all manner of doubts had to be settling by Henry's rib-cage.
The cartilage ripped from his shoulder during a club game last autumn represented the third career-threatening injury faced by Shefflin in five years. It would also prove, by some distance, the most challenging.