Henry Shefflin is officially the greatest hurler in the history of the game after winning a record ninth All-Ireland medal at Croke Park.
Fittingly, Shefflin scored nine points as Kilkenny saw off Galway by 3-22 to 3-11 in Sunday’s replay.
Shefflin joins current squad member Noel Hickey and legendary Kilkenny goalkeeper Noel Skehan as the only men to win nine MacCarthy Cups.
But uniquely, all Shefflin’s medals have come on the field of play with none from the bench.
The 33-year-old Shefflin told reporters: “Winning last year was a very sweet victory because I was coming back from the cruciate injury more than anything else.
“There were major concerns and questions over if I would ever get back there again. I just think this one captures my whole career more than anything else.
“I would definitely have to say that this one is sweet. As well as that if you’d spoken to me the Monday after the Leinster final, I’d have had serious question marks about myself.
“So to reach this now after the summer, I’d have to say this is definitely the sweetest. As well to win the ninth medal, myself and Noel Hickey today, is a special feeling.”
Now Shefflin has his sights set on a perfect 10 with Kilkenny next year.
He added: “I just want to be able to sit down this winter and not have an operation to look forward to.
“At my stage of the career you always review and evaluate and stuff like that. I’d love to be back again. Hopefully my body will allow me to do that.”