| 9.7°C Dublin

Henry Shefflin set to retire tomorrow after greatest hurling career of all time

Henry Shefflin's career in pictures Close

Henry Shefflin celebrates last year's All-Ireland final win

Henry Shefflin celebrates last year's All-Ireland final win

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin celebrates winning the All Ireland Senior Championship

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin celebrates winning the All Ireland Senior Championship

Henry Shefflin gives a thumbs-up to Ballyhale’s record sixth All-Ireland title

Henry Shefflin gives a thumbs-up to Ballyhale’s record sixth All-Ireland title

Henry Shefflin, Ballyhale Shamrocks, kisses the cup. AIB GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Club Championship Final, Ballyhale Shamrocks, Co Kilkenny, v Kilmallock, Co Limerick. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture credit: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

Henry Shefflin, Ballyhale Shamrocks, kisses the cup. AIB GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Club Championship Final, Ballyhale Shamrocks, Co Kilkenny, v Kilmallock, Co Limerick. Croke Park, Dublin. Picture credit: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

Kilkenny manager Brian Cody and Henry Shefflin

Kilkenny manager Brian Cody and Henry Shefflin

Barry Kelly sends off Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin in last year's All-Ireland Senior Championship Quarter-Final

Barry Kelly sends off Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin in last year's All-Ireland Senior Championship Quarter-Final

30 September 2012; Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin celebrates with the Liam MacCarthy Cup and winning his 9th All-Ireland medal. GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Championship Final Replay, Kilkenny v Galway, Croke Park, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE

30 September 2012; Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin celebrates with the Liam MacCarthy Cup and winning his 9th All-Ireland medal. GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Championship Final Replay, Kilkenny v Galway, Croke Park, Dublin. Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE

Henry Shefflin reacts after scoring a point against Galway in the 2012 All-Ireland final

Henry Shefflin reacts after scoring a point against Galway in the 2012 All-Ireland final

Kilkenny hurler Henry Shefflin with Pat Hickey,President of the Olympic Council of Ireland (left) and  Liam O'Neill,President of the GAA  at Croke Park for the Olympic Torch relay in 2012

Kilkenny hurler Henry Shefflin with Pat Hickey,President of the Olympic Council of Ireland (left) and Liam O'Neill,President of the GAA at Croke Park for the Olympic Torch relay in 2012

Henry  lifts and hugs his daughter Sadhbh.

Henry lifts and hugs his daughter Sadhbh.

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin celebrates with the Liam MacCarthy Cup in 2011

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin celebrates with the Liam MacCarthy Cup in 2011

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin holds his knee after pulling up injured, forcing him off in the early part of the All-Ireland final. Photo: Matt Browne / Sportsfile

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin holds his knee after pulling up injured, forcing him off in the early part of the All-Ireland final. Photo: Matt Browne / Sportsfile

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin receiving treatment after suffering a knee injury in Croke Park on Sunday.

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin receiving treatment after suffering a knee injury in Croke Park on Sunday.

Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, celebrates after scoring his side's second goal in their All-Ireland Senior Championship Semi-Final win over Waterford in 2009

Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, celebrates after scoring his side's second goal in their All-Ireland Senior Championship Semi-Final win over Waterford in 2009

Brian Cody embraces his talisman Henry Shefflin after the 2003 All-Ireland final.

Brian Cody embraces his talisman Henry Shefflin after the 2003 All-Ireland final.

Ballyhale Shamrock's players, from left, Henry Shefflin, Alan Cuddihy and Michael Fennelly celebrate after their win in the Kilkenny Senior Hurling Championship Final between Clara v Ballyhale Shamrocks last year

Ballyhale Shamrock's players, from left, Henry Shefflin, Alan Cuddihy and Michael Fennelly celebrate after their win in the Kilkenny Senior Hurling Championship Final between Clara v Ballyhale Shamrocks last year

 Kilkenny captain Henry Shefflin lifts the Liam MacCarthy Cup after victory over Limerick in the 2007 All-Ireland

Kilkenny captain Henry Shefflin lifts the Liam MacCarthy Cup after victory over Limerick in the 2007 All-Ireland

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin lifts the Liam MacCarthy cup with Darragh McGarry, son of James McGarry, right. Guinness All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final, Kilkenny v Limerick in 2007

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin lifts the Liam MacCarthy cup with Darragh McGarry, son of James McGarry, right. Guinness All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final, Kilkenny v Limerick in 2007

Kilkenny captain Henry Shefflin holds the Leinster Senior Cup as Wexford players make their way to their dressing room. Guinness Leinster Senior Hurling Championship Final in 2007

Kilkenny captain Henry Shefflin holds the Leinster Senior Cup as Wexford players make their way to their dressing room. Guinness Leinster Senior Hurling Championship Final in 2007

Kilkenny Hurler Henry Shefflin married Deirdre O'Sullivan at Callan, Co. Kilkenny in 2007. Photo Patrick Browne Jnr

Kilkenny Hurler Henry Shefflin married Deirdre O'Sullivan at Callan, Co. Kilkenny in 2007. Photo Patrick Browne Jnr

Ballyhale Shamrocks players Tom Coogan, left, and Henry Shefflin lift the Tommy Moore Cup after the AIB All-Ireland Senior Club Hurling Championship Final in 2007. Picture credit: Brian Lawless / SPORTSFILE

Ballyhale Shamrocks players Tom Coogan, left, and Henry Shefflin lift the Tommy Moore Cup after the AIB All-Ireland Senior Club Hurling Championship Final in 2007. Picture credit: Brian Lawless / SPORTSFILE

Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, commiserates with Cork players, l to r, Ronan Curran, John Gardiner, Kieran Murphy, Sarsfields, Wayne Sherlock, Sean Og O hAilpin and Donal Og Cusack. Guinness All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final in 2006

Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, commiserates with Cork players, l to r, Ronan Curran, John Gardiner, Kieran Murphy, Sarsfields, Wayne Sherlock, Sean Og O hAilpin and Donal Og Cusack. Guinness All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final in 2006

David Fitzgerald, Clare, squares up to Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, watched by team-mates Frank Lohan (2) and Sean McMahon, Clare. Allianz National Hurling League, Division 1 Final in 2005

David Fitzgerald, Clare, squares up to Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, watched by team-mates Frank Lohan (2) and Sean McMahon, Clare. Allianz National Hurling League, Division 1 Final in 2005

Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, scores a last minute point. Guinness All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship, Semi-Final, Kilkenny v Clare, Croke Park, Dublin in 2006. Picture credit; Damien Eagers / SPORTSFILE

Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, scores a last minute point. Guinness All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship, Semi-Final, Kilkenny v Clare, Croke Park, Dublin in 2006. Picture credit; Damien Eagers / SPORTSFILE

Donal Og Cusack, Cork, in action against Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny during the 2004 All-Ireland final

Donal Og Cusack, Cork, in action against Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny during the 2004 All-Ireland final

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin leaves the field with an eye injury during the Guinness All-Ireland Hurling Championship Quarter Final Replay against Clare in 2004

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin leaves the field with an eye injury during the Guinness All-Ireland Hurling Championship Quarter Final Replay against Clare in 2004

The Kilkenny doctor Tadhg Crowley attends to Henry Shefflin as referee Pat Horan and Clare's Gerry Quibb look on during their  All-Ireland Hurling Championship Quarter Final Replay
 at Semple Stadium in 2004

The Kilkenny doctor Tadhg Crowley attends to Henry Shefflin as referee Pat Horan and Clare's Gerry Quibb look on during their All-Ireland Hurling Championship Quarter Final Replay at Semple Stadium in 2004

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin lifts the Liam MacCarthy cup after the All-Ireland victory over Clare in 2002

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin lifts the Liam MacCarthy cup after the All-Ireland victory over Clare in 2002

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin shoots to score his side's goal despite the presence of Stephen Byrne, left and Kevin Martin, Offaly in the 2000 All Ireland Hurling Championship Final. Picture credit: Matt Browne/SPORTSFILE

Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin shoots to score his side's goal despite the presence of Stephen Byrne, left and Kevin Martin, Offaly in the 2000 All Ireland Hurling Championship Final. Picture credit: Matt Browne/SPORTSFILE

Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, in action against Simon Whelahan in the Cats 1999 Leinster hurling final win

Henry Shefflin, Kilkenny, in action against Simon Whelahan in the Cats 1999 Leinster hurling final win

Henry Shefflin in action for Kilkenny against Wexford in the Walsh Cup in 1999. Picture Credit: Ray McManus/SPORTSFILE.

Henry Shefflin in action for Kilkenny against Wexford in the Walsh Cup in 1999. Picture Credit: Ray McManus/SPORTSFILE.

A fresh-faced Henry Shefflin in 1999

A fresh-faced Henry Shefflin in 1999

/

Henry Shefflin celebrates last year's All-Ireland final win

The announcement that Henry Shefflin’s glittering inter-county career has come to an end is expected tomorrow.

A press conference has been called for noon where confirmation that Shefflin has opted against returning to the Kilkenny panel for a 17th season is anticipated.

He said after winning the All-Ireland club title with Ballyhale Shamrocks on St.Patrick’s Day that he would declare his future intentions inside a week or so. It now seems certain that after considering the situation, he has decided that the time is right to exit the county scene.

If that’s the case, he will leave as a current Leinster and All-Ireland title holder, an appropriate departure point for a man who is widely regarded as the best hurler of all time.

Shefflin (36) fulfilled a super-sub role with Kilkenny last season, coming on as a replacement six times, and while there’s no doubt that Brian Cody would have liked to see him continue this year, there would have been no guarantees on how much action he would get.

While Kilkenny are in transition mode, it’s unlikely to have increased Shefflin’s chances of getting more action than last season.

If Shefflin departs, it will break up a famous partnership, which has played such a key role in what has been the most successful run by any county in the history of hurling.

Promoting Shefflin to the senior team was one of the first acts by Cody when he took over as Kilkenny boss for the 1999 season. Significantly, he immediately appointed the 20-year old Ballyhale man as free-taker, taking over from DJ Carey, one of the all-time greats from placed balls and general play.

The act of faith in Shefflin proved well-founded. For in addition to becoming possibly the best all-round player in general play in hurling history, he also broke the hearts of opposition everywhere with his consistent accuracy from frees.

He played in 71 senior championship games with Kilkenny, winning 59, drawing four and losing eight. Given that remarkable strike rate, a huge trophy haul was inevitable. Chief among those achievements was winning 10 All-Ireland senior medals, an all-time record. His 11 All-Star awards also constitute a record.

He set an all-time championship scoring record of 27-483, including three occasions when he scored a landed a total of 17 points in major games.

Remarkably, he played under only one Kilkenny manager (Cody) over the last 16 years.


Most Watched





Privacy