Ballyhale Shamrocks full forward Colin Fennelly
It may have been their seventeenth County Title in their young and illustrious history but Ballyhale Shamrocks looked as happy as ever as they reigned supreme in Kilkenny once more.
The club who has achieved the most All-Ireland victories were near their imperious best as they swatted aside the challenge of Dicksboro.
Ballyhale had ten different scorers on the day including Colin Fennelly who finished with a goal as the Shamrocks ran riot.
Fennelly mentioned the delight in achieving a third title on the trot for Ballyhale and the role that played in their preparations for the game.
“It's a fantastic feeling so it is and it’s hard to think about it during the game or anytime throughout the year that you may do three in a row and it’s a great achievement for all of us as a team to keep driving it on and it shows the character we have especially after the last day where it was such a tough game and we kept on going”.
“ We made up for last week’s mistakes by just focussing on the basics”.
He added: “In the James Stephens game we were driving it on and a few players just stepped up to get us over the line and that’s what you need on those type of days and today we had everyone play well”.
In some ways Dicksboro played straight into the hands of Ballyhale by going man on man but particularly on Fennelly who was left in acres of space and on another day he could have struck more than one goal.
“It’s just the way the game went for us and you stick to the basics and if you get a chance for a goal you go for it and that’s what Ballyhale do we just go at teams as hard as we can and there is no holding back”.
“I had a few chances but to be fair to the Boro it was great defending back there with the keeper making a couple of great saves and it was tough. It’s always tough in there and while the games might look easy at times it’s never that way at all with all the pulling and the dragging and that’s the same for both teams”, said Fennelly.
The one big regret for Ballyhale though is the fact they won’t get the opportunity to defend their Leinster and All-Ireland titles over the coming weeks.
“You can’t think about Leinster’s or All-Ireland’s before the game but as soon as it’s over it is strange not to be going on to a Provincial campaign over the next few weeks but look we just have to look forward to Kilkenny and the rest of the lads will enjoy a break over the next few months”.
While some of the players will be on an extended break over the winter Colin Fennelly and a number of his teamates have Kilkenny duty to occupy their mind over the next while as they prepare for a Leinster Semi-Final against either Dublin or Laois and they can be satisfied of a job well done in the Ballyhale Shamrocks jersey in 2020.
The Kilkenny captain for 2020 has a Halloween Leinster semi-final date on his horizon.