“I did everything the same and trained as hard as the year before, but the ball just didn’t hop for me… it was just one of those years… I have a bit of unfinished business to attend to after being taken off in the All-Ireland final. We’ll be looking to do better and prove ourselves again.”


– Dan Shanahan, 32, says he’s out to prove he’s no flash in the pan; as if he should have to, having won the Hurler of the Year, a third All Star and a second successive Park Hotel Supreme Sports Star Award not much more than 12 months ago. Still, you’re only as good as your last game and for more than one Waterford man that wasn’t very good at all.


“The stand-off continued last night as efforts to broker a deal between both sides got underway.”


– No, not the never-ending Rebel hurlers row but the dispute that’s erupted between two west Cork villages over the remains of the giant Courtmacsherry whale, which residents of nearby Kilbrittain claim are partly theirs. Which is like saying because they shot the movie ‘Moby Dick’ in Youghal, Waterford should have been included in the credits. Only in Cork, eh….


“We made an offer and it was turned down. We offered Stoke-on-Trent.”


– Stoke boss Tony Pulis on their ‘failed bid’ to prise Kaka away from Milan/Man City’s clutches. Maybe they’ve heard Wedgwood isn’t worth much?


“If he or anyone else thinks snooker on ice or played in sequinned outfits is the way forward, I’ll be happy to listen to the proposals.”


– World Snooker chairman Sir Rodney Walker responds to Ronnie O’Sullivan’s “boring” rant.


“There are other things more important than money. A player wants to be remembered for what he has won. Imagine 10 years after you stop playing, you go back, you look around, you are not in any picture, you have no medals, no trophies; it is like you played for nothing. You may have a fantastic car, a fantastic home, but what does it matter? You can have a contract that is better than your friends, but no player looks back and says: ‘I won more money’.”


– Liverpool striker Fernando Torres on the mooted arrival of Kaka, who, he might be reminded, has already won a Serie A title, the World Cup, the Champions League and a FIFA World Player of the Year award. Kaka’s aim in life is to be an evangelical minister. Pity that… he would have loved Craig Bellamy.