Marble City madness as Liam heads home again
IN the end, they could even afford to cheer the Galway scores.
As the realisation sank in that they'd won yet another All-Ireland and the famous old trophy would be returning to the Marble City once more, Kilkenny fans watching on the big screens applauded as Joe Canning fired over a couple of late points which were nothing more than consolation efforts.
"Well done Joe," said one victorious supporter with a laugh in Kyteler's Inn in the heart of Kilkenny city, no doubt remembering that 'controversy' a couple of weeks ago when the Galway full-forward was deemed to have been disparaging to "king" Henry Shefflin.
It was Joe who ended up looking disconsolate and Kilkenny with the spoils.
During a dramatic few minutes which started with Galway having a goal disallowed, continued with them hitting the post and having a man sent off and then Walter Walsh burying western hopes with Kilkenny's second of three goals, all Geraldine Russell and Georgina Culleton could do was look at each other with smiles of resignation and give each other a hug of solidarity.
Two Galway girls living in Kilkenny for several years and, on this day of days, proudly sporting their 'Gaillimh Abu' jerseys in a sea of black and amber, they were accepting of their fate.
Both settled in the historic city after marrying local men -- Paul and James, respectively -- and were ready for a bit of slagging within their mixed marriages.
"We were still talking after the Leinster final and we'll still be talking tonight," Georgina assured us.
"I came down here eight years ago for an All-Ireland final. We went to Tynan's pub to watch it and I met him that night," she said by way of back story.
Inside the Set Theatre at Langton's Hotel, packed rows of Cats supporters watched in the darkness as a well-told story played out again in front of their eyes.
Silence and a few "here we go again" groans greeted Galway's early goals before normal service was resumed with Kilkenny's first.
As the match wore on, "horse into him Henry" and "go on Hogie" were common comments.
Followed by that familiar but never-old chant of "champio-nays".
Former camogie star Geraldine Hayes put it nicely: "There will never be anyone like them again."