Some of the greatest hurlers never to win an All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship medal will have their contributions to the game acknowledged on All-Ireland finals day at Croke Park on Sunday week (September 8).
The GAA have today announced their 'Hurling Stars of the 1980s', a specially-chosen line-up of 'unsung heroes' and 'county legends' whose names were put forward by an experienced panel of All-Star and former All-Star selectors who covered Gaelic games for the print and broadcast media during the '80s.
The late Tommy Quaid from Limerick, who sadly passed away in 1998, is the chosen goalkeeper with Antrim's Dessie Donnelly and Terence 'Sambo' McNaughton manning defensive berths alongside Clare duo Ger Loughnane and Sean Stack, who are sure to get a rousing reception from the Banner supporters when they are introduced to the crowd.
Waterford's Mossy Walsh and Pat Critchley, the only All-Star hurler produced by Laois, are the midfield pairing to the honoured, while John Callinan, another Clare man, joins Martin Quigley (Wexford) and Irish hurdles champion Paddy Kelly (Limerick) in the half-forward line.
Former Railway Cup winners David Kilcoyne and PJ Cuddy, the former being Westmeath's only All-Star, have been picked in the full-forward line along with Waterford's Jim Greene who was an All-Star winner himself back in 1982.
Commenting on the project, GAA President Liam O'Neill said: "We were presented with a rare opportunity to temporarily replace the Jubilee teams in both codes because of the back-to-back successes of both Galway (hurling) and Meath (football) in 1987-88.
"Legions of top quality players grace Croke Park with their skills but not all are rewarded for their efforts with All-Ireland medals. This should in no way diminish their contribution to the GAA and to the game of hurling.
"For people like me who followed the game of hurling over the course of the 1980s the mention of those who have been chosen on this team evokes great memories and I laud each and everyone of them for the great moments they gave us and the legacy they left behind in their clubs and counties and indeed beyond."
GAA HURLING STARS OF THE 1980S TEAM:
1. TOMMY QUAID (Limerick/Feoghenagh, RIP): Limerick’s first-choice goalkeeper from 1976 to 1993, playing in four Munster finals and the All-Ireland final of 1980. Won Railway Cup and National League medals and an All-Star award in 1992.
2. JOHN GALVIN (Waterford/Portlaw): His career lasted 14 years from 1972 with Waterford and he also represented Ireland in Shinty. Was the county's first All-Star award winner in 1974 and won a second award in 1982.
3. LEONARD ENRIGHT (Limerick/Patrickswell): One of the outstanding full-backs of his generation, he was sub goalkeeper when Limerick won the 1971 National League title. Also excelled in other sports, including athletics. All-Star awards in 1980, 1981 and 1983.
4. DESSIE DONNELLY (Antrim/Ballycastle): Selected on the Antrim Team of the Century. Played in the 1980 All-Ireland club final and the All-Ireland SHC final of 1989 - when he won an All-Star.
5. GER LOUGHNANE (Clare/Feakle): The inspiration behind Clare's resurgence in the nineties and Galway manager from 2006 to 2008. He won National League and Railway Cup medals and was twice an All-Star in 1974 (Clare's first) and 1977.
6. SEÁN STACK (Clare/Sixmilebridge): Widely recognised as one of the outstanding centre-backs of his generation, he won two National League medals with Clare and played on two Railway Cup-winning teams in 1984 and 1985. Won an All-Star award in 1981.
7. TERENCE McNAUGHTON (Antrim/Cushendall): The man affectionately known as 'Sambo' operated both in attack and defence over a lengthy career, lining out at corner forward in the 1989 All-Ireland final. Won an All-Star award in 1991 and more recently was joint-manager of the Antrim senior team.
8. MOSSY WALSH (Waterford/Ballyduff): Distinguished himself at midfield all through the eighties, especially in the Munster finals of 1982 and 1983. Was an All-Star winner in 1980 and a year later won a Railway Cup medal at wing forward.
9. PAT CRITCHLEY (Laois/Portlaoise): A dual player who also played basketball at a high level, he was selected on the Laois Hurling Team of the Millennium. Won an All-Ireland club football medal in 1980 and is the only Laois hurler to win an All-Star (1985).
10. JOHN CALLINAN (Clare/Clarecastle): Played Railway Cup with Munster and the Combined Universities and won a fourth medal in 1985. Was on Clare's National League winning teams of 1977 and 1978 and won All-Stars in 1979 and 1981.
11. MARTIN QUIGLEY (Wexford/Rathnure): Member of the last Wexford team to win the All-Ireland minor title (1968). In 1973, he won a National League medal and the first of four consecutive All-Star awards. Played on four winning Leinster teams.
12. PADDY KELLY (Limerick/Kilmallock): A national hurdles champion, he earned a reputation as a speedy and stylish hurler with Limerick all through the eighties. Won an All-Star in 1984, he was on the losing Munster team in the Railway Cup final of 1986.
13. DAVID KILCOYNE (Westmeath/Ringtown): One of the 'greats' of Westmeath hurling. A Railway Cup and All-Ireland 'B' medal winner, he won the county's only All-Star in 1988 and last year received a Leinster 'Hall of Fame' award.
14. PJ CUDDY (Laois/Camross): A prolific scorer over the course of a lengthy career. Played in the 1977 All-Ireland club final and named on the Laois Team of the Millennium. Won a Railway Cup medal in his fourth final in 1988.
15. JIM GREENE (Waterford/Mount Sion): An All-Star winner in 1982, he won the last of eight county Championship medals in 1988 in the company of his son Brian. Manager when the Déise last contested the All-Ireland minor final in 1992.
Selection Panel - Martin Breheny (Irish Independent), Brian Carthy (RTÉ Radio), Michael Lyster (RTÉ Television), Seán Moran (Irish Times), Mártan Ó Ciardha (formerly Raidió na Gaeltachta) and Jim O'Sullivan (formerly Irish Examiner).