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Shefflin: 'Where is the common sense to this? I'm not saying it because it's Kilkenny'

The Cats great feels that the All-Ireland hurling final was ‘influenced majorly’ by Richie Hogan’s sending off.

Henry Shefflin on The Sunday Game.
Henry Shefflin on The Sunday Game.
Image: RTÉ Sport.

KILKENNY GREAT HENRY Shefflin has strongly argued that the card issued to Richie Hogan for a high tackle on Cathal Barrett in today’s All-Ireland hurling final should not have been red.

Tipperary were 3-25 to 0-20 winners over the Cats at Croke Park this afternoon, and Hogan’s 33rd-minute dismissal comes as a huge talking point from the clash of the old rivals.

Referee James Owens flashed red at Hogan for the late, high challenge with the scoreline reading 1-8 to 0-10 at the time. From there, the momentum swung in Tipperary’s favour and the game escaped 14-man Kilkenny. 

At half-time on The Sunday Game panel, Shefflin noted that it was ‘a harsh call’ — ‘My initial reaction was that it wasn’t a red card,’ he said — and the Ballyhale man re-iterated his stance again afterwards. 

“For me again, in real-time this didn’t look a red card to me,” he told RTÉ Sport’s Joanne Cantwell.

JC: In real time… but is it a red card?

“Where is the common sense to this? I know they’re going out to me for saying this… I still don’t think he [Hogan] hit him [Barrett] with his elbow in the face. For me, it was a yellow card.”

But Cathal Barrett was hit in the face by Richie Hogan. Does it really matter what part of his body?

“Of course it does. If Cathal Barrett sticks his head down, he hits off Richie’s hand, he makes an impact. I just think it was a yellow card offence. I stand by that.

Not by the rules of the game which the highlighted early in the year?

Not by the rules of the game… I totally understand that. But, this game was influenced majorly by that decision. If there was a common sense decision, I think, for me, it would have been a yellow card and we would have had a serious game.

So do we get the referee to referee by common sense or what the rules say?

“I think it’s a bit of both.”

And in steps Anthony Daly:

“We would have had a better final, there’s no doubt. But for me, the fourth angle would make it a conclusive red. I’m sorry.

“Real time again, I thought yellow but we were sitting up here and looking down. But when I saw that fourth angle, I said there is an element of elbow to head and for me, it’s red, yeah.”

Back to Shefflin: 

I’m not saying it because it’s Kilkenny. The game was kind of over, the atmosphere was just sucked out and the life was gone out of it, and that’s the biggest disappointment for me. 

And the last word went to Donal Óg Cusack:

“Nobody wants to see a player getting sent off… I agree, it actually took the good out of the game. But you have to face it. In my mind that’s a red card no negotiable.

“Elbow to the head, he has to go for it. Anything above the neck; we know the referees from the start of the year are really clamping down on it. I think it’s a red all day to be honest, that’s my view on it.”

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Emma Duffy

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