Pat Delaney (Kilkenny hurler)
|Irish name||Pádraig Ó Dúláinne|
Johnstown, County Kilkenny, Ireland
|Died|| (aged 69)
Johnstown, County Kilkenny, Ireland
|Height||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
|*Inter County team apps and scores correct as of 13:21, 24 August 2013.|
Born in Johnstown, County Kilkenny, Delaney first arrived on the inter-county scene at the age of twenty-six when he first linked up with the Kilkenny senior team, making his debut in the 1968 championship. Delaney went on to play a key part for Kilkenny in what has come to be known as one of the greatest teams of all-time, and won four All-Ireland medals, six Leinster medals and one National Hurling League medal. An All-Ireland runner-up on two occasions, Delaney also captained the team to All-Ireland defeat in 1973.
Delaney's career tally of 22 goals and 39 points marks him out as Kilkenny's tenth highest championship scorer of all-time.
Throughout his career Keher made 27 championship appearances. His retirement came following the conclusion of the 1977 championship.
Delaney played his club hurling with the newly formed Fenians club in Johnstown. In 1970, he played a key role in helping the club to win its first senior county title. Delaney and the Feninas contested a total of eight senior county finals between 1969 and 1978, with victories also coming in 1972, 1973, 1974 and 1977. Delaney also won a Leinster club title in 1974.
The Noresiders bounced back the following year with Delaney winning his first Leinster medal following a 3–9 to 0–16 defeat of Offaly. 7 September 1969 saw Kilkenny face Cork in the All-Ireland decider. The Leesiders got into their stride following an early goal by Charlie McCarthy and led by six points coming up to half time when Kilkenny raised a green flag themselves. Kilkenny upped their performance after the interval and ran out winners on a 2–15 to 2–9 scoreline. The victory gave Delaney his first All-Ireland medal.
After surrendering their provincial and All-Ireland crowns to Wexford the following year, Kilkenny began their complete dominance of the provincial championship in 1971. A 6–16 to 3–16 defeat of Wexford gave Delaney his second Leinster medal. On 5 September 1971 Kilkenny faced Tipperary in the All-Ireland final, the first to be broadcast in colour by Telefís Éireann and the only eighty-minute meeting between the two sides. Kilkenny's ever-dependable goalkeeper, Ollie Walsh, had a nightmare of a game in which he conceded five goals, one of which passed through his legs, while that year's Hurler of the Year, "Babs" Keating, played out the closing stages of the game in his bare feet. Kilkenny's Eddie Keher set a new record by scoring 2–11, however, it wasn't enough as Tipperary emerged the victors on a score line of 5–17 to 5–14. In spite of this defeat, Keher was later chosen on the inaugural All-Stars team.
In 1972 Delaney won a third Leinster medal following a thrilling draw and replay victory over Wexford. Once again, Cork provided the opposition in the All-Ireland final on 3 September 1972, a game which is often considered to be one of the classic games of the modern era. Halfway through the second-half Cork were on form and stretched their lead to eight points, however, in a remarkable turnaround, Kilkenny went on to dominate the rest of the game as Cork failed to score again. Delaney collected his second All-Ireland medal following a remarkable 3–24 to 5–11 victory. He later won his first All-Star award.
Delaney was appointed captain of the team in 1973, and he quickly added a fourth Leinster medal to his collection following a 4–22 to 3–15 defeat of Wexford. On 2 September 1973 an injury-ravaged Kilkenny faced Limerick in the All-Ireland decider. A downpour spoiled the game for spectators, however, a Mossie Dowling goal eight minutes after half-time, together with a tour de force by Richie Bennis powered Limerick to a 1–21 to 1–14 victory. In spite of this defeat Delaney later won a second All-Star award.
Wexford were, once again, narrowly defeated by Kilkenny in the 1974 provincial decider. The remarkable 6–13 to 2–24 victory gave Keher a fifth Leinster medal. In a repeat of the previous year Limerick provided the opposition in the subsequent All-Ireland final on 1 September 1974. The Munster champions stormed to a five-point lead in the first eleven minutes, however, a converted penalty by Eddie Keher, supplemented by two further goals gave Kilkenny a 3–19 to 1–13 victory and gave Delaney a third All-Ireland medal.
Kilkenny made it five successive provincial titles in-a-row in 1975. The 2–20 to 2–14 defeat of Wexford gave Delaney his sixth Leinster medal. On 7 September 1975, Delaney lined out in a sixth All-Ireland final, with surprise semi-final winners Galway providing the opposition. Playing with the wind in the first half, Galway found themselves ahead by 0–9 to 1–3 at the interval. Eddie Keher's tally of 2–7 kept Galway at bay giving Kilkenny a 2–22 to 2–10 victory. It was Delaney's fourth All-Ireland medal.
In 1976 Kilkenny looked a sure bet to capture a third successive All-Ireland crown. The season began well with Delaney winning a National Hurling League medal following a 6–14 to 1–14 trouncing of Clare in a replay. Kilkenny's championship ambitions unravelled in spectacular fashion in the subsequent provincial campaign, when a 2–20 to 1–6 trouncing by Wexford dumped Delaney's team out of the championship.
Delaney played his last championship game for Kilkenny on 24 July 1977. The narrow 3–17 to 3–14 defeat by Wexford in the Leinster decider brought Kilkenny's championship campaign to an end.
Delaney also lind out with Leinster in the inter-provincial series of games, and enjoyed much success during a golden era for the province.
After several years of Munster dominance and a losing debut in 1970, Leinster bounced back in 1971. The team went on to secure five consecutive Railway Cup victories over Munster. Delaney played a key role in all of these wins, and ended his career with five Railway Cup medals.
Delaney became famous in the 1970s for introducing the Delaney Bounce, a skill that involves the player tapping the sliotar off the ground while charging through a ruck of opponents.
- Kilkenny Senior Hurling Championship (5): 1970, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1977
- All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship (4): 1969, 1972, 1974, 1975
- Leinster Senior Hurling Championship (6): 1969 (c), 1971, 1972, 1973 (c), 1974, 1975
- National Hurling League (1): 1975–76
- Railway Cup (5): 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975
- "Death of Kilkenny Great Pat Delaney". Hogan Stand website. 19 August 2013. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
- "Kilkenny mourns Pat Delaney – one of its hurling greats". Kilkenny People. 21 August 2013. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
- Moran, Seán (19 August 2013). "Former Kilkenny hurler Pat Delaney dies". Irish Times. Retrieved 24 August 2013.
- "Cork v Kilkenny Classics: 1969 SHC final". RTÉ Sport. 14 June 2007. Retrieved 4 July 2013.
- O'Sullivan, Jim (1 September 2010). "Classic All-Ireland SHC finals – 1972: Kilkenny 3–24 Cork 5–11". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 4 July 2013.
- "Cork v Kilkenny Classics: 1972 SHC final". RTÉ Sport. 14 June 2007. Retrieved 4 July 2013.
- "Tales of the '73 Immortals". Limerick Leader. 31 August 2007. Retrieved 15 July 2010.
- Quirke, Kevin (7 September 2012). "The 1975 All-Ireland final.....looking back". Craughwell GAA website. Retrieved 4 July 2013.
- McEvoy, Enda (10 July 2012). "Three is the magic number this summer". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 4 July 2013.
|Kilkenny Senior Hurling Captain