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Frank Cummins: Kilkenny's Giant Midfielder
The Kilkenny legendary midfielder starred in inter county hurling from November 1966, when he made his debut for the ‘Cats’ in an Oireachtais game, until he retired in 1984 and left a host of gallant memories from his career in the Black and Amber jersey. Kilkenny hurling in the 1960s and 70s had only limited success at minor and under 21 ranks and making the breakthrough to the county senior team required top class performances at club level.
Frank played his schoolboy hurling with his native parish of Stonyford in South Kilkenny and after joining the ranks of the Gardai, he was posted to Cobh, Co. Cork in the late 1960s and a cluster of clubs were in the hunt to secure his services. The influence of Blackrock’s famed status enticed the midfield general to the fishing village on the outskirts of Cork city and he soon won his first Cork county senior hurling medal in 1971 in the colours of his adopted club.
His allegiance to his own county required a great sacrifice and committment for training and when he laced his boots for his final match with Kilkenny, he had accumulated a glorious eight All Ireland senior hurling Celtic Crosses, one as a sub in 1967. Robust and a ciotog type of player, it took a really special hurler to man mark this midfielder and despite his long sweeping swing of the caman, Frank was seldom hooked. His deliveries rained down on full back lines and his constant ability to gather possession, won many battles .
Chosen as the Hurler Of The Year in 1983, his collection of awards during his long career, is testament to the great appreciation of Kilkenny mentors who extended his glittering playing career to almost eighteen years. Playing at midfield soaks up great energy over such a vast period and combined with his club career, this famous son of Stonyford delivered great passion for hurling fans all over Ireland.
For a hurler with eight All Ireland medals, the Kilkenny man epitomises the virtues of graciousness and modesty in a manner that has become a hallmark of his personal life. Frank Cummins set his own standards of excellence on and off the field and always left his skills and prowess do his athletic talking before and after games. Thanks for the wonderful hurling memories of a gentle giant.
Club: Blackrock (Cork)
Inter - county career: 1966/ 84
8 All Ireland Senior Hurling Medals:
11 Leinster Senior Hurling Medals:
Contested 16 Leinster Senior Hurling Finals:
3 N.H.L. Medals: 1975/76; 1981/82; 1982/83
6 Railway Cups: 1971/72/73/74/75/77
3 All Irl Club Hurling Medals: 1971/72; 1973/74; 1978/79
5 Munster Club Hurling Medals: 1971/73/75/78/79
6 Cork Co. Senior Hurling Medals: 1971/73/75/78/79/85
4 All Stars: 1971/72/82/83
Derry JF Doody