The Top Hurling Clubs – Where All-Stars are born

With the All Stars approaching I thought I’d have a look at the history of the All-Star awards. Which clubs have produced the most All-Star hurlers? Which clubs have produced all star hurlers over various eras?

(Edit: you can now check out the Gaelic Football version)

The All Star awards began in 1971, so the records I’m looking at cover 46 seasons leading up to this years awards. The awards therefore don’t include the one or two Cloyne might have picked up for that Ring chap who was decent enough or the awards that Rathnure might have won with 3 Rackard brothers.

The table below shows the clubs that have produced 4 hurlers or more to win All-Stars.


James Stephens of Kilkenny have incredibly produced 10 different hurlers to win an All-Star. This along with giving the hurling world a certain Brian Cody.

(Note: Previously had 11 for James Stephens – double count on Joe Hennessy , h/t Enda McEvoy)

Club Eras

Blackrock in Cork are in second place with 9 different hurlers winning 21 awards. Huge numbers despite not having won an award since Wayne Sherlock’s 2004 All-Star, 12 seasons ago.

Ballyhale on the other hand have won 22 of their 27 All Stars over the course of the past 15 years. 6 of their 8 award winners have played for Kilkenny since 2000.

Below I have charted the clubs who have won 10 or more All Stars. The chart shows them by year.


This chart (unfortunately a little small) shows us how Ballyhale have collected their vast majority of awards since 2000. Also we can see the dominance Finbarrs & Blackrock held in Cork in the 70’s and 80’s.

My analysis has shown me that groups that grow up together can raise their own standards – awards for clubs are picked up by multiple players in certain eras. Club players push each other to further greatness.

  • Ballyhale Shamrocks¬† – 6 winners of 16 awards (2009-15)
  • Blackrock – 6 winners of 13 awards (1974-84)
  • Mullinahone – 3 winners of 10 awards (2000-11)
  • James Stephens – 3 winners of 5 awards (1999-02), 2 winners of 6 awards (2007-10), 5 winners of 12 awards (1973-79)
  • St Finbarrs – 4 winners of 11 awards (1971-78)
  • Seir Keiran – 4 winners of 9 awards (1994-00)
  • South Liberties 3 winners of 13 awards (1971-81)

Take Young Irelands as an example- 3 winners of 13 awards (1997-02) – DJ Carey, Pat O Neill and Charlie Carter won multiple awards but since that group Young Ireland’s have won none and prior to their success Young Irelands had no all-stars. Club players seem to drive each other to the highest level of success.


What links many of the top clubs is their location in their respective counties.

  • James Stephens – Kilkenny City
  • St Finbarrs, Blackrock, Glen Rovers – Cork City

This makes the achievements of Ballyhale Shamrocks (8 winners, 27 All Stars) and Fenians (7 winners, 20 All Stars) all the more remarkable. Producing multiple All Star winners is exceptional for a non-city club.


Tipperary Senior Hurling Rankings- Post Semi Finals & Feedback Adjustments

I have received feedback from last weeks post of ELO ratings of team. The input from Tipperary fans has helped me adjust the weighting of the matches in my ranking formula. Below are my adjusted rankings which include the 2 semi-finals and the 2 relegation play offs.


The new weightings has seen some movements up and down the table. I have added greater initial weight ot the Roinn 1 teams as they entered 2014. I have also reduced the weight of Roinn 1 wins over Roinn 2 wins and increased the Divisional results weighting. The current ranking system was correct in predicting 63% this years results.

The rankings expect a tight county final.

On the bottom of the list we can see already-relegated Moneygall are propping up the 30. The current rankings expect Moyne-Templetuohy to join them with Silvermines and Knockavilla surviving.

All feedback is 100% welcome.

Tipperary Senior Hurling Rankings

I have been looking to use ELO methods to rank teams in club hurling in various counties. ELO rating of teams can be seen online in various sports (Football,, Gaelic Football) and ELO is most popular as the ranking method of Chess players.

The formula to calculate team ranking is based on various factors

  1. Team rankings before the match,
  2. The result and
  3. The importance of the match.

I have been tinkering around with my formula and have a ranking system in place for the Tipperary Senior Hurling Championship.

Why Tipperary you may ask?

Well a senior championship that has 30 teams, uses 2 group divisions mixed with 4 geographical divisions before leading to a knockout tournament is surely the craziest club competition to rank in hurling.

Using results for the past 3 seasons and 300 matches, the rankings currently show:


Thurles Sarsfields lead the way as they look to “three-peat” by winning a third consecutive county title. The rankings show semi-finalists Kildangan as their closest opposition with Clonoulty-Rossmore and Killenaule further behind.

2016 Biggest Movers

Looking at the changes in ranking points in 2016 we can see which clubs have moved the most in 2016. Thurles have remained on top but who has gained the most points this year:


Clonoulty Rossmore have jumped up the rankings this year. Their success in overthrowing Eire Og Annacarty in the West and then a super Quarter-Final win against Mullinahone saw them jump into 3rd place in the rankings.

Kildangan have also moved up with a huge win over Drom & Inch last week, a team they had lost by 10 points to last year.

Borris-Ileigh also improved, they exited the 2015 Championship in May of 2015 but this year saw them reach the quarters.

On the other side of the rankings we can see the biggest fallers:


Nenagh Eire Og went on a huge run in 2015 from the Preliminary Quarters to lose last years final by a point to Thurles. This year saw them exit the championship early.

JK Brackens suffered 3 defeats of 16, 14 and 13 points but have ended the year safe at Senior level for 2016, dropping to Roinn 2. Moneygall and Silvermines will battle against relegation next week.

Divisional Ranks

As Tipperary likes to stick to divisional rankings which are part of the Championship you might be interested to see the rankings by Division:


The North Division of Senior hurling in Tipperary is larger than Senior hurling in Kilkenny, Wexford, Waterford, Westmeath, Laois, Limerick  & Offaly!



To create these rankings you have to weigh various stages of the championship. This article may stir some interest from club fans who disagree with some ranks. Please let me know where the rankings may be out as the weighting system is constantly evolving.