December 4, 2023

‘It will sharpen his teeth’ – Kilkenny fans look forward to King Henry’s return

There has been a bittersweet reaction among Kilkenny hurling fans to the shock news that ‘King Henry’ is set to take over as manager of Galway.

Last night it was confirmed Ireland’s most decorated hurler is set to take the reins of the Tribesmen ahead of Clare’s Davy Fitzgerald, who had been widely tipped for the role in recent days.

The Kilkenny legend, who boasts no fewer than 10 All-Ireland SHC titles and 11 All-Stars, is believed to have been interviewed for the position earlier this week.

The three-time Hurler of the Year also led his beloved Ballyhale Shamrocks to successive All-Ireland club hurling titles in 2019-2020 in what was his first foray into management.

The 42-year-old is currently in charge of Thomastown, one of four teams remaining in the Kilkenny IHC.

The Galway gig will be Shefflin’s first coaching role at inter-county management level.

He said of his appointment: “Managing the Galway Senior Hurlers presents a unique opportunity and we relish the exciting challenge ahead as we begin the journey.

“We look forward to working with the players, the county board, and the wider Galway GAA community over the coming years.”

Reacting to the surprise appointment, Kilkenny fans were largely unanimous in wishing Shefflin well in his new role. But many speculated on the Kilkenny GAA Supporter News platform that it would only be a stepping stone for the Kilkenny legend to eventually take over from Brian Cody.

One man commented: “Best of good luck Henry. It will sharpen his teeth and get experience for a welcome return to the noreside when the time comes.”

Another woman said: “Wow. Wish he could’ve stayed in KK but this is a great opportunity for him! I wish him all the best.”

One man added: “Henry with Galway and I hope in the future you will be available to manage Kilkenny.”

Another person commented: “Best of luck Henry you be great for Galway what they need is someone that kw [sic] what they are doing and with minor and under 20 lads coming it’s what Galway need.”

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