Can Kilkenny rekindle their recent dominance after their final defeat to Tipperary?

JJ Delaney and Tommy Dunne discuss the finer points of the All-Ireland hurling decider

BY Raf Diallo 20:31 Tuesday 6 September 2016, 20:31 6 Sep 2016

Paul Murphy and Eoin Murphy of Kilkenny dejected ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

After two All-Ireland titles in a row to restore the dominance of the Brian Cody era, Kilkenny didn't have enough in 2016 as Tipperary defeated them in Sunday's All-Ireland hurling final. 

But what does the future hold for Kilkenny after retirements and injuries before the championship began and with Tipp having the potential to build on their success?

Off The Ball were joined by ex-Kilkenny and Tipperary stars JJ Delaney and Tommy Dunne to discuss the final and Delaney feels only a few additions are needed for the Cats.

"The under-21s haven't won an under-21 [title] for the last while but we won a minor there again. All we need is two or three players to step up to the mark. There's a lot of these players that were on the panel for the first year," said Delaney.

Tipperary's Michael Breen and James Barry celebrate ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

"Probably the find of the season for ourselves was James Maher. He was probably the player of the league for Kilkenny but he had a horrific accident on the farm at home and he was gone for the year. And that on top of losing Richie Power to retirement, Michael Fennelly and Ger Aylward missing from last year - two All-Stars from last year's team - but there are people there.

"We don't need another full 15. We probably need two or three and I think they are there to be fair to them."

But he praised Tipperary for the way they approached the final. 

"They done to Kilkenny what Kilkenny do to other teams as well and you have to sit back and admire it. They were crowding Kilkenny forwards and they were leaving 30-40 yards of space for that Tipperary full-forward line," said Delaney, highlighting the outstanding movement of the Tipp forward line.

Meanwhile Dunne was equally impressed by the entire Premier team, stating that "it's as close to a 10/10 performance from a team in an All-Ireland final as you could hope to get."

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