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12th Jun 2023

Eoin Cody doesn’t need any prompts for a speech that came straight from the heart

Niall McIntyre

Eoin Cody didn’t need any scribbles or prompts for his Hogan Stand speech.

The Kilkenny captain picked up the microphone and, on the steps of the famous stand, he proved that off-the-cuff is so much better than off-the-page.

“I never want to see a captain reading out a speech again after that from Eoin Cody,” said Joanne Cantwell after he’d said his piece.

And so say all of us.

Nothing against a captain who needs a few reminders to get them going but there was something memorable about Cody’s rendition. He started off by saying, understandably, that he was ‘bet’ after the game and there was a time mid-way through it, where he asked the Kilkenny backroom team to raise their hands so he could name them out.

But what’s the problem with that, sometimes we take things like this too seriously.

“Absolutely bet after that, to be honest, what a game,” began Cody.

“Hearing all week that there’s no hurling in Leinster, I’ll tell you, there’s plenty of hurling in Leinster,” he added to loud cheers.

“I’ll start with Galway, only for the last puck of the game, ye’d be up here and look, the man-of-the-match is from the losing team today, and that doesn’t happen too often so to Galway, well done,” he said, as a reference to Conor Whelan’s tour-de-force.

“To the boys down here, first of all to Cillian Buckley, what a man!

“To Croke Park, the pitch was unbelievable.

“I’d play here every day if I could. So thanks to everyone in Croke Park. To Sean Stack and the officials, it was a great game of hurling and ye contributed to that.

“Thanks to all the fans, we appreciate ye all so much, and we hope to see more of ye the next day.”

The Shamrocks player then signed off with a lovely touch, as he paid his sympathies to Teddy McCarthy’s family in Cork. He said he didn’t know too much about Teddy, how could he, but the thought was there.

“A quick word, there was a tragedy during the week in the GAA community, Teddy McCarthy.

“I wouldn’t know too much about him only that the man won two All-Irelands in the space of two weeks so condolences to everyone down in Cork, his family, friends and all relations as well.”

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