THE Riggs and Murtagh of last season's Premier Senior Hurling Championship are out of commission for the rest of the season.
Lethal weapons Patrick Horgan, with a staggering 6-56 (0-34 f, 0-3 65), and Conor Lehane, the Reardens Club Hurler of the Year who hit 0-55 (0-29 f, 0-4 65), were the top scorers in 2021.
We won't see them in action over the coming weeks with Glen Rovers and Midleton watching on as Newtown, Blackrock, St Finbarr's and Erin's Own duke it out for the Seán Óg Murphy Cup.
Right now, Shane Kingston is the main club sharpshooter across the campaign, with a superb 4-37 from four matches, 1-22 f, 1-0 pen, 0-3 65, and the balance from play. He was the width of the crossbar from sending the PSHC quarter-final with the Barrs to extra time. Douglas' elimination means he won't be adding to that haul though.
Harbour Rovers ace Stephen Condon was excellent for Avondhu in the Divisional Section, hitting 3-47, 3-25 from play. That puts him top of the pile but the five matches for North Cork took place outside the club series proper.
Special mention to Cork U20 All-Ireland winner Colin O'Brien as well, with 1-24.
Other hurlers who shoot the lights out included Charleville's Jack Doyle with 0-32 (0-16 f, 0-2 65), Darragh Fitzgibbon on 0-25 (0-8 f) and Andrew Cagney with 4-7, Sars' Aaron Myers whose tally of 0-25 (0-10 f) came in three games, Bishopstown legend Pa Cronin on 0-27, 10 from play.
Barrs' rising star Ben Cunningham, still eligible for the Cork U20s next spring, has clipped 1-31 (0-22 f, 0-2 65), in their four matches, and the rest of the load has been shared: Brian Hayes 2-11, Eoghan Finn 1-7, Jack Cahalane 1-7, Ethan Twomey 1-5, and Conor Cahalane 0-6.
Rockies free-taker Alan Connolly is their leading marksman on 1-23 (0-16 f, 0-1 65), but again they've a good spread in attack: Robbie Cotter 1-12 Tadhg Deasy 1-9, and Michael Halloran 0-12. Connolly amassed 5-31 last year and that goal threat will be key to Blackrock securing silverware again.
Jamie Coughlan, just 17 when he clipped 1-1 in Newtown's last county final success in 2009 and still outstanding at the elite club level, has 0-29 (0-20 f, 0-1 65), backed up by Cormac O'Brien 2-6, Tim O'Mahony 0-11 (0-5 f, 0-1 65), and Cathal Naughton 0-8.
The Bear, Eoghan Murphy, is part of the veteran core of Erin's Own that won counties in 2006-'07, and has shot 0-18 (0-14 f, 0-2 65) this season, while Robbie O'Flynn has 1-13 (0-1 f, 0-1 65) and young Conor Lenihan 3-6. The Caherlag club played a game less than the rest, after getting a bye to the semi-finals as top seed.
Shane Kingston (Douglas): 4-37 (1-22 f, 1-0 pen, 0-3 65);
Conor Lehane (Midleton): 0-41 (0-28 f, 0-1 65);
Patrick Horgan (Glen Rovers): 1-33 (0-17 f, 0-4 65);
Ben Cunningham (St Finbarr's): 1-31 (0-22 f, 0-2 65);
Jack Doyle (Charleville): 0-32 (0-16 f, 0-2 65);
Jamie Coughlan (Newtown): 0-29 (0-20 f, 0-1 65);
Pa Cronin (Bishopstown): 0-27 (0-17 f);
Alan Connolly (Blackrock): 1-23 (0-16 f, 0-1 65);
Darragh Fitzgibbon (Charleville): 0-25 (0-8 f);
Aaron Myers (Sarsfields): 0-25 (0-10 f).