Padraig Walsh has attributed Kilkenny's remarkable turnaround to the emergence of a host of talented youngsters.
The Cats were tipped for relegation from Division 1A of the Allianz League after losing their first two games to Cork and Clare, but bounced back to lift their 18th league title at Tipperary's expense yesterday.
Paddy Deegan, Mossy Keoghan, John Donnelly and Richie Leahy were among those to shine during the campaign and full back Walsh was full of praise for them when speaking to Off The Ball after the 2-23 to 2-17 victory.
"We've had a lot of fresh faces this year and they're really after driving things on. There's great lads coming through there and they're all great ball winners. They were brilliant today and brilliant all through the league, so it's great for them," he said.
"It was a very close game. We went in at half-time two points down, so we knew we had a lot of work to do in the second half.
"Wally [Walter Walsh] got a great goal and it really drove us on for the second half. When you're in a final everyone wants to win it. When you go out at the start of the league, you want to be here lifting that cup, so we're just delighted we got there today."