Friday 15 November 2019

Fennelly calls on Kilkenny team-mates to step up to the plate for Galway rematch

Henry Shefflin
Henry Shefflin

Colm keys

Michael Fennelly has sounded a rallying call to his Kilkenny colleagues to take the heat off Henry Shefflin.

Fennelly, the current Hurler of the Year, admitted it was time for him and his colleagues to "step up and take responsibility" after a series of below standard individual displays the last day.

Shefflin's second-half tour de force gave Kilkenny a route back into the drawn game, but now Fennelly has accepted the need for shared responsibility.

"It's time for all of us on the Kilkenny team, myself included, to step up and take responsibility on Sunday and not to be depending on Henry Shefflin.

"On different days, different players give big displays, but for us Henry Shefflin is always there. In the drawn All-Ireland final he was amazing again," said Fennelly.

"We can't always be relying on Henry to win us matches, though, and that's why the whole team has to improve. Too many of us weren't up to standard in the drawn game against Galway."

Meanwhile, Kilkenny are expected to make a positional switch ahead of Sunday's replay with Richie Hogan likely to return to attack in a potential switch with TJ Reid.

Kilkenny reopened the doors to Nowlan Park again last night for their penultimate training session before Sunday after keeping the public out for the last two weeks.

Galway have no injury worries and expect to have an even greater level of support in Croke Park, if ticket requests are anything to gauge by.

Galway Hurling Board chairman Joe Byrne revealed that demand was "way in excess" of what it was for the All-Ireland final itself.

"Perhaps the availability of family tickets has pushed demand up, but it looks as if the drop in prices has really had an effect," said Byrne.

"We would expect up to 45,000 Galway supporters in Croke Park on Sunday."

Irish Independent

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