Cats skipper Kennedy enjoying pressure of another ‘All-Ireland’

“Every game is an All-Ireland” is Kilkenny captain Brian Kennedy’s mantra as he leads the county into this evening’s Bord Gais Energy Leinster U21 final against Wexford at Wexford Park (7.30pm).

Having been listed on the bench for the seniors’ electric win over Tipperary last Saturday, the St Lachtains man is geared up nicely for the game. With the losers exiting the competition, he and his U21 team-mates are in the same position as Brian Cody’s side were against Tipperary and he enjoys the pressure. “If you lose you’re gone, there’s no back door system and that’s what makes it so good, the U21 championship.”

He felt privileged to just be in Nowlan Park last Saturday but his focus has always been on this clash as Kilkenny hope to retain their provincial crown.

“You’d love to be out there playing and you’d be envious of the lads, with the atmosphere and everything. I was named on the 26 and it gives me a lot of confidence. Hopefully that will roll on to Wednesday night and we can get the win down in Wexford.

“It was a great occasion and we were delighted to get the win against Tipp. But as soon as it was over, we were focusing on Wednesday and the seniors will get focused for Saturday night against Waterford.

“But there’s never been an atmosphere like it (at Nowlan Park) ever before.

“Thankfully the seniors won and it gives us a bit of confidence going down to Wexford.”

Senior squad members Kennedy, Padraig Walsh and Willie Phelan will all start in defence while Ger Aylward, who was brought on and taken off again in the Tipp game, has been named at full-forward. Cillian Buckley is ruled out through injury but named in the subs.

WEXFORD: B Murphy (Shelmaliers); G Foley (Fethard), C Goff (Oulart-the-Ballagh), E Conroy (Naomh Eanna); A Kenny (Buffers Alley), S O’Gorman (Adamstown), D O’Leary (St. Pat’s Camolin); L Chin (Faythe Harriers), J Hobbs (Ballygarret); J Guiney (Rathnure), I Byrne (Ferns), G Moore (Glyn-Barntown); C McDonald (Naomh Eanna), B Carton (Cloughbawn), R Clarke (Faythe Harriers).

Subs: S Murphy (Monageer), C Heffernan (Faythe Harriers), C O’Leary (Oulart-the-Ballagh), N Murphy (Crossabeg), S Kenny (Bunclody), D Wright (Blackwater), D Murphy (Blackwater), R O’Leary (Buffers Alley), K Whelan (St Anne’s)

KILKENNY: A Duggan (Dicksboro); P Carroll (Lisdowney), W Phelan (Dunnamaggin), B Kennedy (St Lachtains); P Walsh (Tullaroan), L Harney (Kilmacow), O McGrath (John Lockes); J Langton (Clara), O Walsh (Dicksboro); J Power (Carrickshock), R Reid (Ballyhale Shamrocks), K Reilly (St Patrick’s); C Martin (Emeralds), G Aylward (Glenmore), M Brennan (St Patrick’s).

Subs: D Walsh (Thomastown), J Nolan (O’Loughlin Gaels), S Donnelly (St Lachtains), P Keating (Erins Own), D Burke (O’Loughlin Gaels), C O’Shea (Clara), J Hayes (Kilmacow), C Prendergast (Clara), E Doyle (Rower-Inistioge), M Power (Piltown), R Lennon (Bennettsbridge), G Teehan (Graigue-Ballycallan), J Corcoran (John Lockes), C Buckley (Dicksboro).

More in this section

CourtsGaaPlace: Wexford ParkPlace: Nowlan ParkPlace: WexfordPlace: -Place: -BallaghPerson: KennedyPerson: Brian KennedyPerson: Brian CodyPerson: Pádraig WalshPerson: Willie PhelanPerson: Ger AylwardPerson: Cillian BuckleyPerson: G FoleyPerson: C GoffPerson: E ConroyPerson: Naomh ÉannaPerson: A KennyPerson: S O’GormanPerson: D O’LearyPerson: L ChinPerson: Faythe HarriersPerson: J HobbsPerson: J GuineyPerson: RathnurePerson: I ByrnePerson: G MoorePerson: Glyn-BarntownPerson: C McDonaldPerson: B CartonPerson: R ClarkePerson: S MurphyPerson: MonageerPerson: C HeffernanPerson: C O’LearyPerson: N MurphyPerson: S KennyPerson: BunclodyPerson: D WrightPerson: D MurphyPerson: R O’LearyPerson: K WhelanPerson: A DugganPerson: P CarrollPerson: LisdowneyPerson: W PhelanPerson: DunnamagginPerson: B KennedyPerson: P WalshPerson: TullaroanPerson: L HarneyPerson: KilmacowPerson: O McGrathPerson: John LockesPerson: J LangtonPerson: ClaraPerson: O WalshPerson: J PowerPerson: CarrickshockPerson: R ReidPerson: Ballyhale ShamrocksPerson: K ReillyPerson: C MartinPerson: G AylwardPerson: GlenmorePerson: M BrennanPerson: D WalshPerson: ThomastownPerson: J NolanPerson: O’Loughlin GaelsPerson: S DonnellyPerson: P KeatingPerson: Erins OwnPerson: D BurkePerson: C O’SheaPerson: J HayesPerson: C PrendergastPerson: E DoylePerson: Rower-InistiogePerson: M PowerPerson: PiltownPerson: R LennonPerson: BennettsbridgePerson: G TeehanPerson: Graigue-BallycallanPerson: J CorcoranPerson: C BuckleyPerson: DicksboroEvent: BordEvent: Leinster U21 finalEvent: U21Organisation: All-IrelandOrganisation: KilkennyOrganisation: WexfordOrganisation: TipperaryOrganisation: St LachtainsOrganisation: TippOrganisation: WaterfordOrganisation: ShelmaliersOrganisation: Oulart-TheOrganisation: St.Organisation: CloughbawnOrganisation: BlackwaterOrganisation: St Anne’sOrganisation: DicksboroOrganisation: St Patrick’sOrganisation: Emeralds
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