The Kilkenny captain revealed he will be a spectator at Nowlan Park on Saturday for the Waterford-Wexford qualifier, but not to throw an investigative eye over the county’s prospective semi-final opponents.
Ryan’s second cousin is Wexford corner-back Liam Ryan, the defender also lining out at full-back in the county’s recent Leinster U21 final win over Dublin.
“He must be living in the gym, he’s gotten fierce big,” laughs the Kilkenny hurler. “Last year or the year before he was a minor and now he looks older than me. He’s making great ground, a brilliant player.”
So where do the roots lie, Wexford or Kilkenny? “God no, there’s Kilkenny blood in him. I think it’s the Kilkenny blood in him even if he doesn’t say it. His grandfather hurled for Wexford and moved down from Kilkenny, so his grandfather would be my grand-uncle.”
Ryan added: “It’s more enjoyable really not knowing your semi-final opposition. You’re two steps ahead of them and its enjoyable waiting to see what they can bring.