Thursday 20 June 2019

Hurling Team of the Noughties: Kilkenny dominate but some big names miss out

Sean Og O'Hailpin (left), Brendan Cummins (centre) and Dan Shanahan (right).
Sean Og O'Hailpin (left), Brendan Cummins (centre) and Dan Shanahan (right).

THE GAA’S decision to pick a Hurling Team of the Nineties - and honour them in Croke Park this Sunday - elicited a most dangerous response from Solo Run. It got us thinking ... how about a Team of the Noughties?

There is one obvious ‘problem’ with all this: you are not going to achieve a particularly democratic spread of counties when one of them, Kilkenny, ran away with seven of the ten All-Irelands up for grabs between 2000 and ’09.

Thus, we have eight Cats among our chosen ‘15’, leaving the rest (Cork with three, Waterford two, Galway and Tipperary with one apiece) in the shade.

For all the brilliant individuals who failed to make the cut, you can’t argue against the stellar consistency of our Black-and-Amber Eight.

As a consequence, some standout hurlers are squeezed out. Perhaps the most noteworthy is Seán Óg Ó hAilpín, but JJ Delaney (inset) played most of his best hurling this decade at No 7 and simply cannot be dislodged.

Other hard luck cases? Diarmuid O’Sullivan, Tony Browne and Dan Shanahan to name just three. Let the rows begin ...

Possible Team of the Noughties

1. Donal Og Cusack (Cork)

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2. Michael Kavanagh (Kilkenny)

3. Noel Hickey (Kilkenny)

4. Ollie Canning (Galway)

5. Tommy Walsh (Kilkenny)

6. Ken McGrath (Waterford)

7. JJ Delaney (Kilkenny)

8. Derek Lyng (Kilkenny)

9. Jerry O'Connor (Cork)

10. Ben O'Connor (Cork)

11. Henry Shefflin (Kilkenny)

12. Eddie Brennan (Kilkenny)

13. John Mullane (Waterford)

14. Martin Comerford (Kilkenny)

15. Eoin Kelly (Tipperary)

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