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Slideshow: Meet Kilkenny’s All-Ireland final panel
A full rundown of Brian Cody’s men ahead of Sunday’s clash with Galway at Croke Park.
Aidan Fogarty (Emeralds)The 2006 All-Ireland SHC final man-of-the-match winner nailed down a post at corner-forward in Brian Cody's sides but was hampered by injury last year which saw him sidelined. Returned to form this year by smashing in 1-2 against Limerick and 1-3 against Tipperary in recent clashes.
Brian Hogan (O'Loughlin Gaels)The 31-year-old medical rep has become a defensive lynchpin in the Cats side in recent seasons. Has seven Leinster senior and five All-Ireland senior medals to his credit while other notable honours include three Kilkenny senior county titles and two Leinster senior club crowns.
Cillian Buckley (Dicksboro)20-year-old Buckley's rise to prominence has been stunning. In April 2011 he won an All-Ireland colleges medal with St Kieran's but now is in line to replace the injured Michael Rice in the Kilkenny team on Sunday. The UCD student captained Kilkenny to win the All-Ireland minor title in 2010 and will feature in the All-Ireland U21 final on Saturday week.
Colin Fennelly (Ballyhale Shamrocks)The latest talent to roll off the Ballyhale Shamrocks conveyor belt, Fennelly caught the eye with some blistering attacking displays last year as Kilkenny claimed the All-Ireland senior crown. Fennelly, a younger brother of Michael, lost a Fitzgibbon Cup final this year with Cork IT and has an All-Ireland U21 medal to his name from 2008.
Conor Fogarty (Erins Own)From the Castlecomer based club, Fogarty won his first All-Ireland senior medal last year as an unused substitute. Was left half-back on the Kilkenny team that won the 2008 All-Ireland title but lost out at left corner-back on the Cats side defeated by Clare in the U21 decider a year later.
David Herity (Dunamaggin)The netminder has needed to be patient before claiming a spot in goal and only managed to break through to the team last season. He seized his chance to win Leinster and All-Ireland senior medals before then garnering a National League medal by virtue of last May's victory over Cork.
Eoin Larkin (James Stephens)Larkin is a key figure in the Cats forward line and will lead the team into action after winning the Kilkenny senior hurling title with his club last October. Had previously won an All-Ireland senior club medal in 2005 and the 2008 Hurler of the Year also has five All-Irealnd senior titles to his credit with Kilkenny.
Eoin Murphy (Glenmore)Murphy is the understudy goalkeeper to David Herity but is also an excellent attacker. Indeed he lined out at corner-forward during Kilkenny's league meeting against Cork in March, for the county U21 side last year and for Waterford IT in this year's Fitzgibbon Cup.
Henry Shefflin (Ballyhale Shamrocks)One of the greats of the game needs little introduction. 12 Leinster titles, 5 National Leagues, 10 Allstars, 2 All-Ireland club titles and 2 Fitzgibbon Cup crowns illustrate his brilliance but it is the potential prize of a ninth All-Ireland senior medal next Sunday that sets him apart. Excellent again this season with a scoring total of 3-35 to his name.
Jackie Tyrrell (James Stephens)Another Kilkenny player witha litany of honours and in line for his seventh consecutive All-Ireland final start next Sunday. A fearsome and tough defender, Tyrrell has medals from All-Ireland SHC (5), Leinster SHC (7), All-Ireland club (1), Leinster club (2), Kilkenny SHC (3) and Allstar (4).
JJ Delaney (Fenians)One of the greatest defenders in the game, Delaney is featuring in his sixth consecutive All-Ireland final and only injury deprived him of featuring in the 2006 decider. His potential battle with Joe Canning on Sunday is intriguing and the 30 year-old has 10 Leinster senior medals, six All-Ireland senior medals and five Allstar awards.
Joe Brennan (St Patrick's)Brennan first burst onto the stage in the 2008 All-Ireland minor final when he registered 1-3 in that success against Galway. Graduated to Brian Cody's senior panel this season and has already caught the eye in Croke Park this year when he hit 0-4 during his club's All-Ireland JHC final triumph in February.
John Tennyson (Carrickshock)The defender has been cruelly hit by cruciate ligament injuries in recent times that have hindered his ability to get a run in the team. Won All-Ireland senior and U21 medals when starting in 2006, and also lined out at left half-back on the triumphant Kilkenny senior team in 2009.
Kieran Joyce (Rower-Inistioge)From the same club as Kilkenny's legendary attacking great Eddie Keher, this is a notable season for Joyce as he has made his mark at senior level after he broke into the starting fifteen for the All-Ireland quarter-final against Limerick. Joyce captained UL to win the 2011 Fitzgibbon Cup title.
Lester Ryan (Clara)An All-Ireland U21 winner in 2008, Ryan was one of five Clara players who saw honours elude them in that grade the following year. Joined the senior squad last year and the defender won his first All-Ireland medal last September.
Mark Bergin (O'Loughlin Gaels)A highly rated forward, Bergin won an All-Ireland U21 medal in 2008 but was on the team that lost the final in that grade to Clare the following year. Hit 0-6 in his club's All-Ireland final defeat to Clarinbridge on St Patrick's Day last year. Also grabbed a point when introduced during Kilkenny's league final win over Cork last May.
Mark Kelly (O'Loughlin Gaels)Like his clubmate Mark Bergin, Kelly (in the white jersey) is aiming for his first All-Ireland senior medal. Another emerging talent, he struck 0-2 from midfield during Kilkenny's All-Ireland U21 final loss to Clare in 2009.
Matthew Ruth (James Stephens)Ruth was the goal-scoring hero when Kilkenny won the 2008 All-Ireland U21 title in 2008 when he raised two green flags against Tipperary. Got extensive gametime last year but his senior appearances have been restricted this season. A teacher in Kilkenny CBS, he helped coach the school team that lost this year's All-Ireland final to Nenagh CBS.
Michael Fennelly (Ballyhale Shamrocks)The leading midfielder currently in the game, it is in the last few seasons that the reigning Hurler of the Year has established himself. Has a glittering array of honours with All-Ireland medals at minor, U21 (2), senior (5) and club (2), while he overcame injury problems earlier this year to reclaim his place in the team recently.
Michael Rice (Carrickshock)An unlucky figure in the current setup as a serious hand injury has made him unavailable for next Sunday's match. Has grown in stature as a midfielder in recent times, forging a potent partnership with Michael Fennelly, and winning Allstar awards in 2009 and 2011.
Noel Hickey (Dunamaggin)A defensive collosus over the last decade, Hickey has lost his starting spot in the team this season but is still on the cusp of his eigth All-Ireland senior hurling medal this weekend. Has been awarded three Allstars during his career as well and was part of the last Dunnamaggin team to win the Kilkenny SHC crown in 1997.
Paddy Hogan (Danesfort)Centre-back on the victorious Kilkenny All-Ireland U21 team in 2008, Hogan has had to be extremely patient at senior level. Broke into the team this year at midfield but lost his place in the aftermath of the Leinster final. Won an All-Ireland junior medal with his club in 2007.
Paul Murphy (Danesfort)Last year Murphy emerged as a great find in the Kilkenny defence with a series of combative displays at corner-back. Made the position his own and received an Allstar award at the season's end. Similar to other compatriots had mixed fortunes at U21 level, winning an All-Ireland medal in 2008 and losing the final in 2009.
Richie Doyle (Barrow Rangers)Tipped for the senior ranks ever since his standout minor displays during Kilkenny's All-Ireland winning campaign of 2008. Suffered final defeat at the same level 12 months later but won an All-Ireland senior medal as an unused substitute last year. Lined out for Carlow IT in the Fitzgibbon Cup this year and is a natural half-back.
Richie Hogan (Danesfort)A prodigious attacking talent since his underage days, Hogan fired 0-6 in Kilkenny's 2008 All-Ireland U21 win before hitting 0-5 in their defeat in the corresponding fixture against Clare a year later. Has made his mark at senior level in recent years, firing a magical goal in last year's All-Ireland final against Tipperary and winning his first Allstar award last October.
Richie Power (Carrickshock)Advertised his attacking abilities as a youngster by accumulating two All-Ireland medals apiece in the minor, U21 and colleges grades. That form has been properly transferred to senior level in recent seasons as he has won two Allstars over the past two seasons and battled back from injury troubles this year.
Thomas Breen (St Martin's)Breen captained Kilkenny to win the 2008 All-Ireland minor title and grabbed a goal in that 3-6 to 0-13 win over Galway. The U21 grade proved fruitless for him over the past two seasons but has stepped onto the senior stage this year and featured for St Pat's (Drumcondra) in this year's Fitzgibbon Cup.
TJ Reid (Ballyhale Shamrocks)A brilliant offensive weapon, it has taken Reid time to nail down a starting berth. Has shown flashes of genius at stages - 2-2 in the 2007 All-Ireland club final and 0-4 in the 2010 All-Ireland senior final. Was magnificent against Tipperary in the recent All-Ireland semi-final when he struck 2-2.
Tommy Walsh (Tullaroan)One of the most decorated players in the game, Walsh is another defensive cornerstone for Kilkenny like Tyrrell. Is chasing his seventh All-Ireland senior medal next Sunday while the Tullaroan player has remarkably won nine Allstars in the past nine years in five different positions. Mandatory Credit Â©INPHO/James Crombie
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