History beckons for Horgan
By Pádraig Ferguson
Patrick Horgan is on course to make hurling history for Cork this Sunday and move to the head of the all-time leading scorers’ chart.
The Rebel sharp-shooter is six points shy of Galway legend Joe Canning, with Horgan currently on 561 points in the SHC to Canning’s massive haul of 567 collected between 2008 and 2021, via 27-486.
Sandwiched in between them is Kilkenny genius, and current Galway boss, Henry Shefflin who scored 27-484 or 565 points in total during this phenomenal career amassing 10 All-Ireland wins.
But Glen Rovers ace Horgan, has both of those distinguished players in his sights on a day when Cork have a win or bust showdown with Waterford in Walsh Park.
Horgan had scored 22-467 or 491 points for Cork prior to this summer’s championship and has added 19 points over the two games to date.
Given his prolific finishing ability from frees and play, the seven points needed to move to the top slot would look well within his capability, although the overall team result rather than a personal tally will be the big goal for Horgan and the Rebels as they look to recover from their heavy defeat to Limerick and subsequent misfire against Clare.
Between Sunday’s trip to Waterford and the following assignment against Tipperary, it now looks virtually certain that Horgan will make this history and be crowned king of the top scorers list.
Clare’s blistering start to the campaign has been led by Tony Kelly who moved to the front of the Banner’s all-time championship scoring charts in their crucial win over the Rebels last time out, with Kelly now standing on a haul of 268 career points, over taking Niall Gilligan who had scored 20-196 in his 54 matches.
This has also been a landmark summer for Kilkenny’s TJ Reid. The Ballyhale Shamrocks marksman became only the fourth hurler in history after Canning, Shefflin and Horgan to break the 500-point barrier and he currently stands on 511 points ahead of their crunch meeting with Dublin on Saturday.
Reid, replaced at half time in their dramatic one-point defeat by Galway last time out will be up against a Dublin side who are heavily reliant on their own dead ball ace Donal Burke with the Na Fianna man now on 120 points having broken the career century during this Leinster championship.
Limerick have been at the forefront of the modern-day revolution that has seen score board operators kept exceptionally busy as point totals easily break the 20 mark and can even reach the 30-point mark.
Live wire inside forward and free taker Aaron Gillane is currently on 208 career championship points having been on 177 after their All-Ireland triumph of last summer, a stunning total from a career that only began in 2017.
High scoring heroics are by no means confined to the Liam MacCarthy Cup teams.
Tyrone’s Damien Casey could potentially break the 400-point barrier as he currently sits on 386 career points with 39 points scored already this campaign.
With 102 points scored for Donegal – on top of the 227 points he amassed in his time playing for Armagh, Declan Coulter is now firmly established in the 300 Club. It is highly likely that he will be joined there by Longford marksman Joe O’Brien currently on 296 points and 33 points for this season. Meanwhile Fermanagh’s Seán Corrigan is on 286 career points.
Meath’s Jack Regan is now on exactly 200 championship points. Carlow’s Marty Kavanagh is on 197, Kenny Feeney of Mayo is on 194, and Kerry’s Shane Conway is on 182.
Offaly’s Eoghan Cahill became hurling’s newest centurion when he moved on to 107 during the Faithful’s current campaign and Fermanagh’s Ryan Bogue is just two points off joining him