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17th Aug 2019

JJ Delaney and Lar Corbett tell story of league final fight

Jack O'Toole

People can lose their head in sport.

When things get heated, when tempers flare, you can do things that are out of character and defy logic and former Kilkenny defender J.J. Delaney is certainly guilty of the latter.

Delaney threw a punch at Corbett’s helmet after an altercation 14 yards from the Kilkenny goal that saw both players grapple on the ground.

Referee Barry Kelly dismissed the pair but Delaney insists that Corbett was the one that initiated the scrap.

“Hold on now what you don’t see is Lar hits me under the chin before that camera goes on,” said Delaney at The GAA Hour Live All-Ireland final preview at the Liberty Hall in Dublin.

“The retaliation was second but Lar was the one who hit me first” before host Colm Parkinson interjected “yeah but JJ you have to understand that his helmet is harder than your fist.”

Delaeny conceded that he wasn’t really thinking straight during the moment while Corbett

“I think Nowlan Park lends itself for that because the atmosphere down there is unreal,” said Corbett.

“I can’t remember how it started but you definitely did something first [Corbett points to Delaney]. He started off the conversation that you didn’t see it on camera but we don’t seem to see a lot of things.”

Eoin Larkin said that the intensity from the league final carried over to the summer when the two teams met in July.

“As the lads said the atmosphere down there was electric that night,” said Larkin.

“The place was jam packed and you know with the auld enemy coming down to Nowlan Park, there was no way we were going to let them beat us that day.

“Brian [Cody] had stressed that and in fairness we were all saying that all week that there was no way they were going to win.

“Even though we weren’t going that well at the time, it was one of our poorest years, but we just produced that performance.”

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