Obvious place to start after yesterday but just how good is Henry Shefflin?
I don't think yesterday showed anything we didn't know about him..!
As Jarlath Cloonan said this morning, you run out of superlatives for the man. Shefflin is the embodiment of Kilkenny and every hurling supporter should cherish him regardless of their county affiliation.
But to answer your ceist, Terry, what he does - over and over again - is he proves that greatness is not the same thing as brilliance.
Greatness is about leadership, about seizing the moment, about shaping games. One of Shefflin's finest moments wasn't in victory at all but in defeat against Cork in 2004 - that shot that Donal Og saved. Kilkenny were sinking and Shefflin knew what had to be done. It didn't work for him on that occasion, but the principle remains.
Of his generation, yes. That's as far as you can go.
Greatest we've ever seen.
And seeing as we're talking greatness, one tried and tested indicator of greatness is longevity. Shefflin has started every one of Kilkenny's championship matches under Cody. 62 games in a row. It defies belief.
You grow up on tales of Ring, Doyle, Keher and Mackey but you see them through other people's words. There's no prism with Shefflin - we all see it for ourselves.
One of the best of the modern era obviously but yesterday's personal display wouldn't be in his top five, or maybe top ten. I was surprised he was in the running for MOM. The drawn game was what Enda was talking about in terms of leadership. It was a refusal to accept defeat. A single-handed saving of his team. He was like the the Bull McCabe pushing back the tide. Except Henry succeeded where the Bull failed.
Who did get man of the match (Sorry for being behind the eight ball there)
@Brendan, Dublin Something we asked Galway selector Mattie Kenny about this morning, Brendan. He blew the whistle and called what was a free so I don't think he was wrong. Put any of us in that same situation and we'd probably have done the same. Hurling needs a proper advantage rule, though.
@Michael Moynihan Wally Walsh.
@Brendan it was probably a soft enough free, but as Tony Leen said yesterday on Twitter, Donnellan took a lot of steps. Advantage is a big hobby horse of mine and James McGrath could not have envisioned Donnellan flashing a shot of that nature to the roof of the net beyond a couple of Kilkenny defenders and David Herity. From a free, he had a definite point. Everyone heard the whistle blown. I was surprised by the subsequent reactions.
Certainly Galway were very hard done by. And these things occasionally happen. Is there any more to it than that?
The whistle had gone long before the shot. What's the problem?
@Enda McEvoy Re Donnellan sending off, the lesson is not to react to a Kilkenny agitator, Enda!
Of much more significance to me was Joe Canning hitting the butt of the post from a tight angle, with such force that the sliotar rebounded out beyond the 13m line. Kilkenny pointed from the clearance and within a few minutes, Donnellan was sent off and Kilkenny were cruising.
@John Fogarty Paul Murphy for me (MOTM that is))
Yep. Had McGrath blow for a foul on Hayes a few moments earlier, Galway would have still had the point from a free. So Daragh is right - the Canning thing was a four-point swing.
Canning wasn't fully fit and he still produced something out of the bag. The crowd's reaction was incredible - Galway must have outnumbered Kilkenny fans 2:1 yesterday.
@Enda McEvoy That handpass was a smidgen undercooked to Canning, otherwise . . .
@Michael Moynihan I'd have given it to Richie Hogan ahead of Murphy but then The Sunday Game team of the year last night showed just how subjective these things can be. Two Cork and Waterford men in their team. Kofi Annan stuff!
What about Canning lads, rate him?
Has anyone come out with a logical explanation why your best forward - a bull of a man who was horsing Diarmuid O'Sullivan around the place a few years ago, and has the brain and skill to match - is out doing the hod-carrier's job? Especially as he was going in with an iffy knee. But even if he was as fit as a fiddle. It defies explanation to me.
@John Fogarty Shows what you miss when you head for home after the game
I think 2 Cork men in it was OTT. But I thought the 2 Waterford men were there on merit.
@Terry Joe Canning is pure and utter class
@Enda McEvoy Bitter bastard that you are
@Enda McEvoy Mullane didn't play a second half at all this summer, Enda. Moran was there by right.
For me, Paul Murphy was MOM. He performs at a consistently high level and never gets the praise
Ha ha! But I do think Nash will get an All Star.
John: Six forwards better than Mullane this year?
@Daragh Ó Conchúir Year one of development, Enda. Some won't like the football connotations but you build from the back and concentrate on work-rate in year one. Getting Canning back there helping out would have been integral to that.
@Enda McEvoy No-one else really. Who was the other Cork player as a matter of interest
@Enda McEvoy Yes. I'm bringing a sword with me tomorrow!
@Michael Moynihan I do believe it was your own clubman.
@John Fogarty Amateur error there - we had two on the team (cough)
@Enda McEvoy Now you truly are dead to me
@Enda McEvoy Sorry, it was Cronin.