“I rang our physio, John Casey, panicking, and saying, ‘John this is over.’”
Eoin Kelly has revealed he was barely able to walk the week before Tipperary’s sensational victory over Kilkenny in the 2010 All-Ireland hurling final.
The then-Tipperary captain ended up scoring 0-7 as the Premier County denied Brian Cody’s men an historic five-in-a-row.
Kelly was struggling to get out of bed that All-Ireland final week and needed the aid of a wardrobe to help him stand up straight.
“I had ongoing back trouble though and it flared up the week of the game,” Kelly said in a new book ‘Tipperary: Game Of My Life’.
“On the Wednesday morning before the match, I couldn’t get out of bed. I was absolutely crippled so I actually crawled out of the bed to get to my phone.
“I rang our physio, John Casey, panicking, and saying, ‘John this is over.’ ‘Relax,’ he told me, ‘It’s Wednesday — get into your car and come up to me’.
“I pulled myself up using the wardrobe, got into the car and drove up to John in Nenagh. My back had gone into spasm but somehow John managed to fix it.
“Players often have to deal with these sort of things and I feel so lucky that it didn’t stop me from playing that Sunday.”
As @TipperaryGAA take on @KilkennyCLG in the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Final this weekend; GAANOW Rewind takes a look back to 2010 when Tipperary denied The Cats a historic 5 in-a-row. Who will prevail this weekend? pic.twitter.com/xrOubZHRCI
— The GAA (@officialgaa) August 13, 2019
The 2010 final ended up delivering Tipperary a first All-Ireland title for nine years and one Kelly remembers fondly.
“The 2010 All-Ireland was my day of days. It was the way we played. It was everything we prepared for,” Kelly continued.
“I remember thinking on the bus into Croke Park that the day felt exactly like 2009 and I was thinking… this is half-time.
“It was like the 2009 final had only been played two hours beforehand and we were going back in to play the 2010 final as the second half. It just felt so real.
“There was a drizzle of rain in 2010, the same drizzle was there in 2009, and I kept thinking that 2009 was half-time and here’s the second half.
“The script was written and it was meant to be. Playing and winning with an intensity instilled in us by Liam Sheedy was amazing.”
TIPPERARY: Game Of My Life, by Stephen Gleeson, is available to buy here.