The final verdict:
Pat Fleury, former Offaly All-Ireland winning captain: ”That was some match. It was an extraordinary recovery by Kilkenny in the second half. They knew they could do better than they were doing in the first half.
“I never saw Kilkenny look so jittery because so many of their great players never settled into the game in the first half. Fair play to them, right from the start of the second half they got down to the task.
“They knew it was going to be tough. They were 6-1 ahead in terms of points scored in the second half, but Galway refused to go away.
“They (Galway) got a bit of a fortuitous goal then. It was against the run of play at the time. A ball broke between two defenders and they made the best of their luck. That gave Galway heart again that took them right to the end.
“The leadership that Henry Shefflin showed was extraordinary. You couldn’t praise him highly enough. Jackie Tyrrell was super as well. Brian Hogan when back at full back was magnificent.
“When Joe Canning missed his second last free which would have levelled the game I thought the show was over. He missed it badly, and he knew it. He was very disappointed when he turned away. However, he nailed a great free in the end to draw the match.
“It was a nervy final. There were jitters on both sides, but Galway settled the better of the two teams. They enjoyed a tonic start when Joe Canning scored a great goal.
“It is all to play for the next day again. It will be fascinating again, I am sure. Anyone who wasn’t uplifted by that game can’t be satisfied by sport. The game was that good.”