Shefflin recognises Dicksboro challenge


One of the last county finals of the season appears, at least on paper, one-sided, as the might of Ballyhale Shamrocks takes on outsiders Dicksboro in Sunday’s Kilkenny hurling showdown at Nowlan Park.

Except that Dicksboro, as a city club, aren’t outsiders at all: they dethroned title holders and city rivals James Stephens in the semi-final.

Sunday may mark their first final since 1994, and they last won the title the year before that, but Henry Shefflin is not underestimating the challenge as he looks to win his fifth county title with Ballyhale.

“They had a very strong performance against the Village,” says Shefflin, “they were very impressive, and really are on a roll at the moment, because the championship was confined into such a tight space this year. They have had games coming at them and haven’t had time to think.

“They are performing very well and it is going to be very difficult to beat them. To be fair, we need to focus on ourselves.

“For the last couple of years in Ballyhale we have not performed to the levels that we have had,” Shefflin adds. “Obviously, it is very disappointing that TJ Reid is not there for us, to have a full selection, but everyone else is fit and ready. If we can get our level of performance right, we stand a good chance.”

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