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Friday 24 November 2017

Tribesmen dominate All Stars after dream season

Galway’s Joe Canning is now a four-time All Star hurler
Galway’s Joe Canning is now a four-time All Star hurler

This year's All Star hurling team has been selected along mostly expected lines, with Galway equalling their record haul of seven award winners, a mark set by the last team from the county to win an All-Ireland in 1988.

The breakdown of seven from Galway, five from beaten All-Ireland finalists Waterford, two from Munster champions Cork and a single Tipperary man reflects a season when Micheal Donoghue's team claimed all three major titles available to them; the Allianz League, the Leinster title and their first All-Ireland in 29 years.

Of what were presumed to be the tight calls, Waterford goalkeeper is preferred to Cork's Anthony Nash while Mark Coleman - Cork's standout performer from the Munster SHC - is honoured at wing-back.

Galway defender Adrian Touhy could be considered the most unlucky of those nominees to miss out.

Notably, Pádraic Maher is selected in the team for a fifth time and at 28, is now just one shy of the record for a Tipperary player, jointly held by Nicky English and Eoin Kelly.

The football All Stars, meanwhile, will be announced on tomorrow evening, live from the official banquet in Dublin's Convention Centre.

The Hurler of the Year and Footballer of the Year - as well as the respective young player awards - will also be revealed on the night.

The chief points of interest in the football awards are whether Stephen Cluxton (Dublin) or David Clarke (Mayo) - both of whom have also been nominated for Footballer of the Year - will get the goalkeeper's award.

One or both of Ciarán Kilkenny and Dean Rock are expected to miss out in attack, where fellow Dubs Con O'Callaghan and Paul Mannion will most likely pick up their first All Stars.

It is expected, however, that Andy Moran will receive the Footballer of the Year award, the second season in succession the gong has gone to a Mayo player.

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