Henry Shefflin has the 'whole package' for inter-county management, says TJ Reid

Ballyhale had hoped to make history by completing three All-Irelands in a row
Henry Shefflin has the 'whole package' for inter-county management, says TJ Reid

Henry Shefflin and TJ Reid have won trophies together with Ballyhale Shamrocks as players, and now, with Shefflin as manager. Picture: INPHO/Morgan Treacy

TJ Reid believes that clubmate Henry Shefflin has the "whole package" for inter-county management and expects him to be back on the sidelines soon.

'King Henry' is the most successful hurler of all time with 10 All-Ireland medals for Kilkenny and has enjoyed a sensational start to management with Ballyhale Shamrocks.

He guided his home club to back-to-back All-Irelands, winning six trophies in the process and 17 straight championship games, before quitting in January.

He was replaced by Waterford native James O'Connor who guided East Cork side Fr O'Neill's to the All-Ireland intermediate club final earlier this year.

Kilkenny icon Reid believes that family man Shefflin simply needed a year out to "recharge the batteries" and will be back in the game soon.

Asked if an inter-county job is the logical next step for Shefflin, Reid said "he has the whole package for it" and described his pal as a person who "doesn't like staying idle".

"Henry, I'm sure he has got plenty of phone calls over the last couple of months to take over teams," said Reid. 

"I'm sure he has things in his head about where he wants to go. But being honest, I think he just wanted to take a year out, recharge the batteries, spend some time at home, then take on a different opportunity, be it Kilkenny or Waterford or Tipperary.

I know Henry, for a fact, that he doesn't like staying idle. He's very much on the go, very driven. He has targets, has goals to hit. I'm sure, in the next year or two, you probably will see Henry manage or be involved in some team."

On the prospect of Shefflin joining ex-Cats colleagues Eddie Brennan and David Herity in inter-county management, Reid shrugged.

"I don't know, Henry has to decide that himself," said Reid. "He has everything a manager needs. If he does go on to manage a team, you just wish Henry the best of luck. Anything that Henry gets involved in, he'll do it 110 percent. I've no fear of that."

Ballyhale had hoped to make history by retaining their All-Ireland club title and completing the three-in-a-row though the GAA has opted to scrap the provincial and All-Ireland championships this season.

"The club All-Ireland was never mentioned, it wouldn't be mentioned until we got to the later stages of the championship," said Reid. 

"Obviously the All-Ireland series is a fantastic competition and even if Ballyhale Shamrocks weren't in it, I'd be at home watching whoever is representing Leinster or Munster.

"I'd be sitting down at home watching All-Ireland final day in January or February. It's unfortunate that it is (cancelled) but different circumstances have popped up. 

"It won't be going ahead which is a big loss to hurling and football in Ireland because most clubs around the country would give their left arm to be in a club All-Ireland. It is unfortunate but we're very much looking at different circumstances this year."

* AIB's The Toughest Summer will air weekly, every Thursday at 1pm, on YouTube at www.youtube.com/aib for five weeks from July 23rd through August 20th with Episode One following legendary Ballyhale Shamrocks and Kilkenny hurler TJ Reid as he shares his own experience of these past testing months. The final feature-length documentary will air on RTÉ 1 in late August. 

More in this section

Sport Newsletter

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up