They say that no news is often good news and in this long build-up to our Connacht semi-final on 14th June – most likely against Galway in Salthill – there’s been little in the way of news out of the squad. This evening, however, this piece appeared in The 42 (formerly The Score – that name-change is one of the weirder rebranding exercises I’ve come across) – thanks to Digits, by the way, for mentioning it in the comments just now – in which Noel Connelly says that it’s too soon at the minute to know if Cillian O’Connor will be fit for this crunch tie.
I assume the quotes used in this piece emanated from today’s launch of the Connacht football championship, though it’s not clear from it where or in what context the Mayo joint-manager said what he did. The quote posted by Digits earlier on is worth having another look at so here again is what Noel said about Cillian and his injury:
He probably won’t be back to full training for about another three weeks. So we would be hoping that he will maybe take some part on 14 June, hopefully all of it, but at this stage it’s too soon to call.
That doesn’t sound great, I must admit – three weeks from today is just two weeks and a bit out from the semi (and there we were thinking the bloody match was an eternity away) so it could be a stretch for the Ballintubber man to be back firing on all cylinders then. We’re simply not the same team in Cillian’s absence and I’d certainly be very wary of us heading into an important championship tie without him. Here’s hoping he does make it.
In that piece, Noel helpfully name-checked a number of other players currently nursing bumps and bruises – Aidan and Seamus O’Shea, Chris Barrett, Tom Cunniffe and Michael Conroy were all mentioned in this respect – but he did say that all of them should be fit for next month. That list doesn’t, though, include the two goalkeepers – Robbie Hennelly and Kenneth O’Malley – who, according to the Mayo News, are also on the injured list at the moment.