'We warned TJ if Henry's looking for any information, you better kick him out the gate!'

Eoin Murphy says it will be strange to see Henry Shefflin as the Galway manager next year.

KILKENNY GOALKEEPER EOIN Murphy says it will be unusual to see Henry Shefflin standing on the sideline as the Galway manager next year, but believes that it will be a great opportunity for the Ballyhale Shamrocks man.

avonmore-pro-oats-gaagpa-launch Sam Barnes / SPORTSFILE Sam Barnes / SPORTSFILE / SPORTSFILE

Shefflin was appointed to the helm of the Tribesmen last month, in what was a surprise move after it was speculated that Davy Fitzgerald was in line for the job.

It will be his first management position at inter-county level after a successful term in charge of Ballyhale, where he guided them to two Kilkenny, two Leinster and two All-Ireland crowns, between 2017 and 2019.

Murphy says he was surprised when the news of Shefflin’s appointment was confirmed but adds that Shefflin will have plenty of talent to work with out West.

“Henry, always when he was playing, he was extremely driven and ambitious and I don’t think you lose that just because you’ve retired from playing. You can see it in him. He took up the mantle with Ballyhale when he retired straight away and you know, they probably walked through Kilkenny the years he was there.

“It’s a great gig for him. The amount of good hurlers they have up there. I know from talking to one or two of the Galway boys, they’re excited to start working with him whenever that will be but he is an ambitious person so to take up an opportunity like that, why wouldn’t he?

“It still will be weird. I won’t be going looking for his autograph or anything like that now but, no listen, it would be much worse for the Ballyhale guys because they’ve been soldiering with him for a good few years playing and then obviously coaching as well.

“We warned TJ as well like, if Henry’s calling up looking for any information, you better kick him back out the gate,” Murphy laughs.

Murphy is just off the back of an incredible weekend with his club Glenmore, in which they secured the intermediate championship crown in Kilkenny.

Interestingly, Murphy is an outfield player and helped himself to one point from centre-back as his side came out as convincing winners against St Lachtain’s in the final. He did line out between the sticks for the club at one point back in 2006, but that was down to a goalkeeper shortage in the senior squad.

In 2014, Glenmore were relegated to the junior ranks which Murphy recalls as an occasion where “we left them [the club] down.” That dark memory makes the climb back to the top tier all the more significant for him. 

“I’m actually shouting here, the voice is gone,” he begins. “It’s only going to come back over the next couple of days. Brilliant few days.

“It was a bit of a relief at the same time. We’ve been long enough knocking on the door there. A great couple of days.

The time when we got relegated to junior, we probably had a bad year. We were probably stuck in a bit of a rut, hit a bit of a plateau. We weren’t really progressing out of the first round to a quarter-final or anything like that. Maybe we were a little bit rudderless.

“Going back down, it reinvigorated every one. We had to change tack. We have a serious set up below. We have two full size pitches, a walking area around it. We have an indoor astroturf, four fully kitted out dressing rooms, an unbelievable gym that we fundraised for last year. It’s kitted out with absolutely everything. The community put that there for us.”

Kilkenny hurler Eoin Murphy has teamed up with Avonmore Protein Milk to launch the new Avonmore Pro-Oats product. Murphy was representing the GPA, of whom along with the GAA, Avonmore Protein Milk are a long-standing supporter.


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