Eoin Larkin retires after career he ‘could only have dreamed of’

The 2008 Hurler of the Year retires after 12 years with the Kilkenny senior hurlers

Kilkenny’s Eoin Larkin in action during this year’s All-Ireland final. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Kilkenny’s Eoin Larkin in action during this year’s All-Ireland final. Photograph: Donall Farmer/Inpho

 

The drum roll continues for Kilkenny with the departure of yet another member of the county’s most successful generation.

Eoin Larkin accumulated eight All-Ireland medals in a career that began in 2005 and his retirement leaves Richie Hogan as the only player still active to have started in the 2009 All-Ireland win over Tipperary, which marked Kilkenny’s first four-in-a-row – only the second in hurling history.

Larkin, who was 32 last July came to national prominence as a leading light in the All-Ireland winning campaign of his club, James Stephens in 2005.

A versatile player, who lined out all around the attack and even at times at centrefield, Larkin furthermore won 10 Leinster titles and six league medals. He was individually rewarded with two All Stars in 2008 and ‘09, being also named Hurler of the Year in ‘08.

In 2012 he captained the county to victory in the All-Ireland replay against Galway.

“After due consideration I have decided that now is the right time for me to announce my Intercounty retirement,” he announced on Friday through the Kilkenny county board. “I have enjoyed 12 of the best years of my life with success I could only have dreamed of.

“I am content to walk away now knowing I gave everything I could for myself but also the team every time I walked out on the training pitch or pulled on a Kilkenny jersey.”

He thanked his parents for their support and his father for bringing him to “training and matches and never hesitated when I asked ‘could we go for a few pucks’”.

He continued: “I can never thank my wife Anne enough for the last 12 years of support, advice and often a little pick me up when things weren’t going so well. I also want to thank my children Mark, Holly and Ellie for their support and understanding for what I loved doing. It is certainly payback time now.”

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