A fitting finale to a remarkable career
Henry Shefflin finally decided to bring the curtain down on his remarkable inter county hurling career while watching last Sunday's Kilkenny v Clare League tie on the television in the company of his wife Deirdre.
He met Kilkenny boss Brian Cody at the end of last week who told him that he was welcome back to rejoin the Kilkenny squad at any time.
They talked over tea and scones in Cody's house but the manager left the decision to the player himself.
'The more I thought about it, the more I felt the time was right (to retire)', said Shefflin who indicated that he would continue to play for his club Ballyhale Shamrocks.
Shefflin indicated that his performance in the drawn All-Ireland final against Galway in 2012 was the highlight of his career.
'In terms of hurling to be able to play at my best in the biggest game of the year when the pressure was greatest was the highlight of my career,' said Shefflin, who also nominated winning his first All-Ireland medal in 1999 and captaining Kilkenny to their Liam MacCarthy win as the other major highlights of his career.
Kilkenny County board chairman Ned Quinn said 'we will never see the likes of him again.'
Reeling off his career statistics he reminded the audience that Shefflin had missed out on two League medals due to injury.
In fact, he had overcome four career threatening injuries including two cruciate knee ligament reconstructions in order to continue his career.
Apart from the media the press conference was attended by a sizeable number of the general public who gathered in the balcony overlooking the theatre in Langton's for the announcement.
A fitting finale to a remarkable career.
He earlier released a statement thanking the people with 'deep gratitude' who helped him throughout his career.
His statement is as follows:
I will always be eternally grateful to the numerous people who have encouraged and supported me in my pursuit of my sporting dreams.To my wife Deirdre, my parents, brothers and sisters I owe a huge debt of gratitude. Only they really know the many sacrifices they have made on my behalf.
The support I have received from Kilkenny supporters and from the GAA family all over Ireland in good times and in challenging times has been a humbling experience and made me realise how lucky and privileged I am.