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Dublin: 12°C Monday 14 June 2021

Will I be back? I don't know, admits Kilkenny legend JJ Delaney

The eight-time All-Ireland winner is determined to enjoy his latest success in black and amber.

Kilkenny's JJ Delaney leaves the pitch for a blood injury on Sunday.
Kilkenny's JJ Delaney leaves the pitch for a blood injury on Sunday.
Image: INPHO/Cathal Noonan

KILKENNY STAR JJ Delaney says he doesn’t know if he’ll be back in the black and amber again next season.

The Fenians clubman sealed his eighth All-Ireland title on Sunday and when pressed on his future plans, admitted to reporters at the panel’s hotel in Citywest, that he was as yet decided.

“I don’t know at this stage,” said the 30-year-old. “We have club next weekend and I’ll tip away at that and then take a break. I don’t know to be honest.”

Delaney was cut and subsequently missed a section of the 11-point demolition of the Leinster champions in an incident that saw Cyril Donnellan sent off. But the Johnstown man insists there was no need for the Galway man to say sorry afterwards.

“I got five stitches. It could be a lot worse. If you’d have lost it’s be a lot worse. It was a nothing thing,” he said.  ”It was a spur of the moment thing but I suppose it did help us in the end. I was gone for 10 minutes and I didn’t see that but when I came back out we were after building on our lead. It was great to come back out with that cushion.

“I didn’t see it then or since so I don’t know [if it was a wild pull]. I was talking to him after the match and there was no animosity or anything. It was just a spur of the moment thing. There was nothing to apologise for really. I was chatting away after the match and there was no problem whatsoever.”

If he does return next winter of course, Delaney will be gunning for a ninth Celtic Cross. But he admits there’s no lack of appetite on Noreside.

“When you start the year you want to be in the All-Ireland final, it doesn’t matter whether it’s the first or the last. There’s a few lads on the panel that got their first medal yesterday and you are trying to get them their first medal as much as you are trying to get another one for yourself. When we start off there were lads like Peter Barry and DJ who were bursting themselves to get us a medal as well.

“You are trying to get it for the panel. The first one is always the sweetest one as well, they’ll never forget that. The likes of Wally Walsh, he had a dream debut, it’s just great for him. When you retire you’ll look back at [the eight medals]. There’s no point in thinking about about it at the moment. It’ will be great then but at the moment. I take it as it comes.”

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