Canning plays down storm over Cody’s frosty greeting to Shefflin

‘I don’t think Brian or Henry will lose any sleep over it’

Joe Canning believes Brian Cody was simply being his ‘ruthless’ self when he fixed Henry Shefflin with an icy stare and frosty handshake in Salthill.

Cody cut a frustrated figure immediately after Kilkenny's narrow Leinster SHC defeat to Shefflin's Galway, sealed by a Conor Cooney point from a controversial free awarded against the Cats.

"There is a lot being made of it," said former Galway captain Canning of the awkward moment between two old allies. "What do you want him to do, like, be pally pally and smiling away? I don't think Kilkenny people would be happy with that if he was.

“He lost a game in the last second to a score, I wouldn’t be too happy losing a game either in that circumstance. I think it is a bit blown out of proportion, it is what it is and I don’t think Brian or Henry will lose any sleep over it.


“I think they will probably be laughing at the whole thing. Yeah, I don’t think it is much. I would be more worried if it was all pally pally after losing.

“Brian is a winner, there is no doubt about it. It was often said to me before when I was playing, another inter-county manager said to me, ‘Nice guys win f-all’. So you have to be ruthless.

“He did not win all those All-Irelands with Kilkenny being a nice guy and it was a difficult situation obviously with the history of coaching Henry and Henry being up against his native county so, it is what it is. He lost a championship game, that’s life. I would not read too much into it.”

Galway's Tom Monaghan was deemed to have been fouled by Kilkenny's Paddy Deegan for the decisive late free, a harsh call in the eyes of Sunday Game pundits Derek McGrath and Shane Dowling. Both of them agreed that Deegan took 'man, ball and all', which should have been okay.

“I found it hilarious that . . . now I didn’t see the Sunday Game, I don’t really watch it, but I heard it back that Shane Dowling and Derek McGrath said it wasn’t a free because he got ‘man, ball and all’,” said Canning at the launch of the 2022 Bord Gais Energy GAA Legends Tour series.

“If you get the man, is that not a free? It didn’t make sense what they were saying to me. Any time you go through the back of a player it was a free, to be straight up about it.”