Wednesday 13 November 2019

'The King left' – Kilkenny star Richie Hogan with touching message for retired team-mate Henry Shefflin

2014 Hurler of the Year Richie Hogan
2014 Hurler of the Year Richie Hogan Newsdesk Newsdesk

What's less is more and as tributes pour in for the retired Henry Shefflin, Hurler of the Year Richie summed up the mood with simply three words and an emoticon.

The most decorated hurler of all time confirmed at a packed press conference at Langton's Hotel his decision to call an end to his inter-county career with 13 All-Ireland titles to his name, 10 with Kilkenny and three club titles with Ballyhale Shamrocks.

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 in 2015
Henry Shefflin gives a thumbs-up to Ballyhale’s record sixth All-Ireland title
Henry Shefflin, Ballyhale Shamrocks, kisses the cup after All-Ireland club victory
Kilkenny manager Brian Cody and Henry Shefflin after their All-Ireland success last year
Barry Kelly sends off Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin in their 2013 All-Ireland Senior Championship Quarter-Final defeat to Cork
Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin celebrates with the Liam MacCarthy Cup and winning his 9th All-Ireland medal in 2012
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
Henry lifts and hugs his daughter Sadhbh after Kilkenny's 2012 All-Ireland triumph
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 defeat to Tipperary in 2010
Kilkenny's Henry Shefflin receiving treatment after suffering a knee injury in the 2010 All-Ireland
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.
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'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 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
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
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
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
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
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.
A fresh-faced Henry Shefflin in 1999

The legendary Kilkenny figure said that his 16 years playing for Kilkenny will be something he will always cherish dearly.

"When I reflect back over the past 16 years playing the game that I love, at the highest level with Kilkenny, it is impossible to quantify the endless hours of happiness, satisfaction and fulfilment I have enjoyed," he said.

"The various challenges I experienced along the way became opportunities for me to develop as a person both on and off the field of play."

Long standing team-mate and current Hurler of the Year Richie Hogan tweeted a touching picture soon after the announcement today.

"The King left," followed by a crying emoticon.

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