Now, as we look ahead to Sunday’s county final between champions Ballyhale Shamrocks and James Stephens, it only adds to the excitement to look back on some of the historic clashes between the sides.
Recently we published the full match coverage of the 2011 County final between James Stephens and Shamrocks, the last time The Village claimed the Tom Walsh Cup, coincidently against Shamrocks.
See also: 2011 Kilkenny Senior Club Championship Final
Since then though, James Stephens has failed to claim their tenth county title, many times failing at the hands of Shamrocks.
We got to speak to the man who led the Shamrocks to their last two county titles, in which they dispatched Sunday’s opponents en route to the final in the semi-final stages.
That man is James O’Connor, who now is in charge of last year’s Corks senior champions Midleton. The Waterford native brought Shamrocks to two county titles and an All Ireland final in his two years with the side. So he would obviously know these players better than most. So what we wanted to know is if Shamrocks perform as we know they can, can the Village stop them or will they have too much?
“The village will be a very strong opponent, any day you go out in the championship hurling. There is a great rivalry between both clubs also.”
“The two years I spent with the Shamrocks, The Village was always a worthy opponent every day you went out.”
See also: One week on, one week off: Who has the advantage?
“It is going to be a very tight game, it is going to be a really great game of hurling. Knowing the Shamrocks, being with them and having trained with them, i can only nail it for the Shamrocks.”
You can hear the full interview tomorrow on Scoreline, along with a whole host of pre-match build-up on Scoreline Friday night with Eddie Scally