The performance of Labour's John Maher has marked him out as a contender for 2020, according to Labour TD Sean Sherlock.
Mr Sherlock spoke positively about Mr Maher's run in the by-election. He had been elected as a Councillor for the first time in May and, according to the Cork-East TD, if Maher had a longer run-up, he could have done even better.
Maher picked up almost 2,500 first preference votes and proved transfer friendly throughout.
Mr Sherlock said it puts him primed to secure a seat in the four seat Cork North-Central ward in 2020.
"It's a very good day at the office for Labour," Mr Sherlock said.
"It signifies that the vote that John Maher got puts him in contention at the next General Election. If he had more time since May, he could have done a lot better.
"All in all, he is a definite prospect for the Dail and he is one to watch."
Maher was eliminated on the eighth count.
He picked up some 919 transfers from Oliver Moran of the Green Party but it wasn't enough to keep him in the race.
However, Maher said he is proud of what he achieved and that it puts him in a strong position ahead of the General Election next year.
"We're at a 10% vote, we're transfer-friendly and we're in the game whenever the General Election is so bring it on," he said.
Maher's 3866 votes will now be shared between Colm Burke, Thomas Gould and Padraig O'Sullivan in a bid to separate the candidates.
O'Sullivan maintains a healthy lead on 7878 votes, with Burke and Gould split by just 66 votes.