He’s one of hurling’s all-time greats but Kilkenny legend Eddie Keher says he was “starstruck and spellbound” when Muhammad Ali walked into the room. Keher saw through the showman to the "ordinary guy" beneath.
The two met when Ali was in Ireland ahead of his Croke Park fight against Al ‘Blue’ Lewis in 1972.
Keher, who won six All-Ireland titles with Kilkenny including one as captain, was the man chosen to teach ‘The Greatest’ the art of hurling.
“He was using the hurley like a tennis racket,” Keher recalls in 'When Ali Came to Ireland', an IFTA-winning documentary about Ali's time in the Emerald Isle.
Keher seemed to thoroughly enjoy the encounter; “He spent ages trying to rise the ball and that. We had good fun.”.