Monday 23 October 2017

Where are they now?

WAYNE SHERLOCK (Former Cork hurler): although members of hurling's elite with 29 titles between them, today will only be the third league final meeting of Cork and Kilkenny -- and Wayne Sherlock can recall the last one as though it had just happened.



It was in Semple Stadium 10 years ago yesterday, and he was captain of the Cork team, which was beaten by a point, 2-15 to 2-14, in a great game. "Kilkenny started like a train," he recalls, "and they were 2-4 to 0-1 up after five minutes."

It seemed like the controversy which had dogged Cork in the weeks beforehand had taken its toll. "That was the game where we made our protest because of the GPA, with our socks down for the parade and all that, but the players rallied together, we came back and we showed good spirit."

Crucial to that comeback was the decision to move Sherlock onto Eddie Brennan, who had already scored a goal in that opening flurry. Sherlock was subsequently named man of the match. "I was marking Eddie for about 60 minutes, and the ball ran more for me than for him after that."

However, there was a sting in the tail for the Cork captain, as he recalls: "We had it back to level and we were on top. I was coming out with the ball and one of their players, one of the Dowling brothers, took it off me and put it over the bar for the winner. I was really disappointed in the dressing-room afterwards but the lads told me not to be worrying about it. Of course, it's still clear in my mind after all these years, that I should have been a bit quicker in clearing the ball."

A league medal eluded Wayne, but he had ample compensation in three All-Ireland medals, two under 21s, an All-Star in 2004, and three county titles with Blackrock, where he is still playing senior at 33.

"When I stopped playing inter-county, I got involved with the club under 12s and kept with them up to under 15s. We won the Cork Féile title with them and that was very enjoyable. I am a selector with the under 21s, and will get more involved when I retire and can give it 100 per cent."

He works for Pfizer, where he started two weeks after that '02 league final. He is married to June and they have a son Lee (3).

"I have been to three league games and Cork are definitely improving. JBM has brought confidence into the players and he will have the lads up for this game, while Dónal óg's injury could also give an edge to Cork."

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