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Sideline Snippets - The One That Got Away

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Sideline Snippets is's sideways look at all things in the world of GAA. Catch it every week on the site throughout the summer. 

Most Successful Managers

In guiding Kilkenny to an eighth All-Ireland title On Sunday, Cats boss Brian Cody drew level with former Kerry football manager Mick O’Dwyer - who led the Kingdom to eight All-Irelands in the 1970s and ’80s - as the joint most successful manager in the history of the GAA.

O’Dwyer landed his eight titles in 12 seasons between 1975 and 1986, while Cody has taken one more year to reach the same figure. O’Dwyer’s Kerry contested 10 All-Ireland finals in 12 years; Cody’s Cats have been in 11 of 13, only missing out in 2001 and 2005.

Four more join an elite group

As far as All-Ireland medal hauls go, eight appears to be the magic number. Following Kilkenny’s All-Ireland win over Tipperary on Sunday, four more players have joined the elite group of players with eight Celtic Crosses.

Noel Hickey, Eddie Brennan, Henry Shefflin and Michael Kavanagh join Tipperary’s John Doyle and Christy Ring of Cork at the top of the hurling tree.

“It won’t sink in until I sit down and think about it over the winter,” Shefflin said of his remarkable achievement on Monday.

It should be noted, however, that Kilkenny’s Noel Skehan has nine All-Ireland hurling medals, although three of those were won as sub goalkeeper to Ollie Walsh.

On the football front, Kerry’s Ger Power, Mike Sheehy, Pat Spillane, Ógie Moran and Páidí Ó Sé all have eight All-Ireland medals.

A Dish Best Served Cold  

In beating Tipperary on Sunday, Kilkenny manager Brian Cody maintained a quite remarkable streak.

During his 13-year reign, Cody has overseen just six Championship defeats, but each time his team has lost a game they came back and exacted revenge on that county the very next time they met.

Cody's Championship record as manager reads as follows: Played 56 Won 49 Drew 1 Lost 6. Here, Sideline Snippets traces how Kilkenny reacted to each of those six defeats. 

Loss: 1999, All-Ireland Final, Kilkenny 0-12 Cork 0-13
Revenge: 2003, All-Ireland Final, Kilkenny 1-14 Cork 1-11

Loss: 2001, All-Ireland Semi-Final, Kilkenny 1-13 Galway 2-15
Revenge: 2004, Qualifier, Kilkenny 4-20 Galway 1-10

Loss: 2004, Leinster Championship, Kilkenny 1-16 Wexford 2-15
Revenge: 2005, Leinster C’ship, Kilkenny 0-22 Wexford 1-16

Loss: 2004, All-Ireland Final, Kilkenny 0-9 Cork 0-17
Revenge: 2006, All-Ireland Final, Kilkenny 1-16 Cork 1-13

Loss: 2005, All-Ireland Semi-Final, Kilkenny 4-18 Galway 5-18
Revenge: 2006, All-Ireland Q-F, Kilkenny 2-22 Galway 3-14

Loss: 2010, All-Ireland Final, Kilkenny 1-18 Tipperary 4-17
Revenge: 2011, All-Ireland Final, Kilkenny 2-17 Tipperary 1-16

The One That Got Away

It was noted before Sunday’s final by those of a superstitious nature and by others who feel the past can have a bearing on the future that Tipperary had a habit of winning All-Ireland titles in years ending in 1.

The Premier County have won All-Ireland titles in 1951, 1961, 1971, 1991 and 2001. Alas, 2011 was not to be.

The one that got away...

A Picture Paints a Thousand Words

Earlier in the season, Sideline Snippets brought you this photo of Cork footballer Alan O’Connor straining every sinew to catch a ball in the Rebels’ Qualifier win over Down. It was an instant classic and one of the iconic shots of the season.

Sunday’s hurling final probably produced it’s hurling equivalent. Naturally, Monday’s paper were replete with shots of the Kilkenny players and backroom team celebrating a remarkable achievement. But nothing captured the Cats’ indomitable spirit and ferociousness better than this snap of Tommy Walsh.

2011 Top Scorers

Dublin's Paul Ryan managed to hold off any late challengers from Sunday's final to lead the scoring charts at the end of the season. Click here for the end-of-season top 10 chart.

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