Fianna Fáil bye-election candidate for Carlow – Kilkenny Bobby Aylward has congratulated Henry Shefflin on a mesmerizing hurling career following his announcement that he will retire from inter-county hurling.

Mr Aylward commented following the announcement, “Today marks the end of one of the greatest hurling careers of all time. Henry Shefflin caught the imagination of the Irish sporting public on countless occasions over the course of his incredible 16 year career.

“Henry has had a massive impact on hurling both in Kilkenny and across the country as a whole. He also played a central part in securing three All-Ireland club medals for Ballyhale Shamrocks. Henry’s hurling career continues to act as an inspiration for all.

“As a member of Ballyshale Shamrocks GAA Club I had the privilege of watching Henry’s hurling career develop over the years. His exploits on the field provided countless hours of nail-biting entertainment for the local community. Henry lifted the spirits of Kilkenny people year after year with his display of raw talent on the pitch.

“Henry’s career coincided with a hugely transformative time for the GAA as the organisation underwent significant development. However despite this he still adhered to the fundamentals of the sport – by displaying a hunger for victory and emphasizing the importance of comradeship both on and off the pitch. His recovery from a severe injury in 2010, which threatened to cut short his hurling career, provided inspiration for people in all walks of life.

“We will miss following Henry’s impressive performances at inter-county level. However I have no doubt that Henry still has a lot more to contribute to Kilkenny GAA in the coming years. I wish him well in his retirement from what was an amazing hurling career” said Mr Aylward.