Patrick Horgan closes in on scoring record in pursuit of elusive title

Cork captain needs nine points to be top scorer in 2021 senior hurling championship

Cork’s Patrick Horgan has scored a combined total of 46 goals and 1,026 points in his intercounty career. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

Cork’s Patrick Horgan has scored a combined total of 46 goals and 1,026 points in his intercounty career. Photograph: Laszlo Geczo/Inpho

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The last thing Cork hurling captain Patrick Horgan will need or want reminding of is his remarkable scoring tally from over the years. Going into Sunday’s final showdown against Limerick there is only one point he cares about: winning that elusive All-Ireland title.

With 42 points from Cork’s four games to date, the defeat to Limerick in the Munster semi-final, followed by wins over Clare, Dublin, and Kilkenny, Horgan needs eight more points to match top scorer Tony Kelly from Clare, and nine to surpass him, as the top championship marksman for 2021.

With four All Stars, three Munster titles, the 33-year-old is now in his 14th senior season, and has made 143 appearances between league and championship since making his debut in 2008, scoring a combined total of 46 goals and 1,026 points.

He is Cork’s top championship scorer of all time. And their top league scorer of all-time. He also won two Cork senior hurling titles with Glen Rovers in 2015 and 2016.

This summer he also became the leading point-scorer from play in the history of the championship: he has raised 144 white flags from play since 2008, pushing him 10 clear of Joe Canning. He scored 0-15 in the All-Ireland semi-final win over Kilkenny, six of those coming from play.

As far as overall totals go, he’s now just 31 points short of Canning, and if he can avoid injury, Horgan will presumably move into the top spot at some point next summer.

In the history of the All Stars, only John Mullane has more than Horgan’s four statues without an All-Ireland medal to go alongside.

As well as showing confidence when standing over ball, Horgan is confident away from it too, an example being when addressing talk of Cork being “flaky” when he spoke to The Irish Times in 2019.

“They think they know it all. They do, all the boys, they’re not going to take my eyes from me. I watched the Leinster final, the 1996 Leinster final, on telly last week and they’re gammy! So there’s none of them fellas going to talk about us.

“I don’t know who they all think they are. They were all there too in that situation. And they all have situations where that word could be thrown at them too. If you go digging I’m sure you’d find it. But, yeah, I saw them fellas playing, and I’ll leave it at that with them.”

Top championship hurling scorers 2021

1 Tony Kelly, Clare - 3-41 (50) (4 games)

2 Stephen BennettWaterford - 2-40 (46) (5 games)

3 TJ Reid, Kilkenny - 1-39 (42) (3 games)

=3 Patrick Horgan, Cork - 0-42 (42) (4 games)

5 Donal Burke, Dublin - 0-40 (40) (4 games)

6 Lee Chin, Wexford - 2-28 (34) (3 games)

=6 Jason Forde, Tipperary - 1-31 (34) (3 games)

8 PJ Scully, Laois - 0-27 (27) (3 games)

9 Aaron Gillane, Limerick - 1-17 (20) (3 games)

10 Patrick Purcell, Laois - 3-09 (18) (3 games)

=10 Shane Kingston, Cork - 3-09 (18) (4 games)

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