Shane Kavanagh captains Galway

November 8, 2018

New Galway skipper has a winners’ mentality

April 28, 2010 – 3:42pm

WHILE Galway senior hurling captain Shane Kavanagh may not enjoy the high profile of some inter-county players – in truth, defenders rarely do – there are few who have made as committed a contribution to the maroon and white over the last decade than this unassuming 26-year-old from Kinvara.

Even now, as he sits and chats, Kavanagh comes across as an approachable, no airs or graces country lad. Hurling runs in the blood and the club scene is just as important a facet of his being as these heady days with the Galway seniors. “Sure, the club is where it begins and ends,” remarks Kavanagh before the interview finishes.

No doubt, with the club, he has enjoyed great days, winning a county U-21 ‘B’ title in 2003 and subsequently captaining Kinvara to the U-21 ‘A’ accolade the following year. Of course, he was also a pivotal player in the side that reached the 2007 county senior decider, in which they were defeated by kingpins Portumna.

In the colours of Galway, he has also been part of some fantastic days. Kavanagh shot to prominence in 2000, when he was part of the Galway side that claimed a 2-19 to 4-10 victory over Cork in the All-Ireland minor hurling final. Interestingly, that side was coached by current Galway senior selector John Hardiman and included such players as Craughwell’s Adrian Cullinane, Castlegar’s Ger Farragher and Portumna’s Damien Hayes, among others.

Indeed, Kavanagh – who won three Connacht colleges senior ‘A’ medals with Gort CS – returned to the amphitheatre of Croke Park to do battle with Cork, once again, the following year, but this time the young Tribesmen just fell short to the Leesiders, losing the decider on a scoreline of 2-10 to 1-8.

That said, Kavanagh’s star was on the rise. He subsequently lined out with the Galway U-21s – unfortunately, without success – before claiming his first National Hurling League medal as a senior panellist with Galway in 2004. The Kinvara defender also made his senior championship debut that year, coming on late in the Tribesmen’s 5-19 to 1-14 victory over Down in the opening round of the All-Ireland qualifiers.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.