2000 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final
|Event||2000 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship|
|Date||10 September 2000|
|Venue||Croke Park, Dublin|
|Man of the Match||D. J. Carey (Kilkenny)|
|Referee||Willie Barrett (Tipperary)|
The 2000 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final was the culmination of the 2000 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship. It was played on 10 September 2000 between Kilkenny and Offaly. Kilkenny were appearing in their third All-Ireland final in-a-row after losing to Offaly in 1998 and to Cork in 1999. They were looking to capture a first championship title since 1993. Offaly were lining out in their first championship decider since they won the title in 1998. Both sides last met in the championship in the Leinster final earlier in the year when Kilkenny trounced Offaly.
At 3:30pm match referee Willie Barrett threw in the sliothar and the Millennium All-Ireland final, the 112th in all, got under way. Right from the throw-in the Kilkenny men tore into the game. Offaly errors, so atypical of them throughout the late 1990s, were punished mercilessly by the Kilkenny defenders and their forwards. ‘The Cats’ goal-scorer supreme, D.J. Carey, needed only six minutes to make his mark on this decider when he pounced on a mistake from Offaly corner-back Niall Claffey to ram home Kilkenny's opening goal. Carey's sixth-minute goal was followed three minutes later by a Henry Shefflin three pointer. Shefflin's effort was helped home by Carey but the umpire ruled that the ball had already crossed the line. After ten minutes the score read 2-3 to 0-1 in Kilkenny's favour and Offaly looked like they were in real trouble. The last twenty-five minutes of the opening half saw Offaly get into the groove and score seven more points, five of which came from Johnny Dooley frees. Offaly's only real goal chance, a ground stroke from Michael Duignan, went narrowly wide in the eighteenth minute. Kilkenny, however, created several opportunities to add to their two early goals and it was little surprise when Charlie Carter bagged a third goal for ‘the Cats’ four minutes before half-time. At the interval, in spite of Offaly's eighteen scoring chances to Kilkenny's fifteen, ‘the Cats’ had to a ten-point lead of 3-10 to 0-9.
At the beginning of the second-half the Offaly selectors made some tactical changes in an effort to eat into Kilkenny's ten-point lead. Ace wing-back Brian Whelahan and star corner-forward Michael Duignan swapped positions while John Troy was sprung from the substitutes’ bench. These changes failed to alter the dominance of Kilkenny as ‘the Cats’ looked likely to score a goal at any time of the game. For the second time Shefflin was the man on hand to hit the fourth goal after latching onto a brilliant long clearance from substitute Canice Brennan and kicking the sliothar past Stephen Byrne from close range. In the fifty-ninth minute Johnny Pilkington clawed one back for Offaly when his shot went past James McGarry. An injury-time goal by substitute Eddie Brennan was the icing on the cake as Kilkenny defeated their Leinster rivals by 5-15 to 1-14. This game marked the end of the road for the great Offaly team of the 1990s while it was the beginning of a great decade of success for Kilkenny.
|Kilkenny||5-15 – 1-14||Offaly|
| H. Shefflin (2-2)
D. J. Carey (1-4)
C. Carter (1-3)
D. Byrne (0-4)
E. Brennan (1-0)
J. Hoyne (0-1)
A. Comerford (0-1)
|(Report)|| Johnny Dooley (0-8)|
J. Pilkington (1-1)
G. Hanniffy (0-1)
B. Murphy (0-1)
P. Mulhaire (0-1)
Joe Dooley (0-1)
B. Whelahan (0-1)
- 70 minutes.
- Replay if scores level.
- Five named substitutes
- "Barrett will referee final". Irish Times. 2000-08-08. Retrieved 2009-11-16.
- "Goal hungry Kilkenny play Cat and mouse with Offaly". Irish Independent. 11 September 2000.
- "Majestic Kilkenny obliterate Offaly". Irish Times. 10 September 2000. Archived from the original on 11 February 2001. Retrieved 13 June 2011.