The question of injuries within the squad and whether or not any fresh ones occurred as a result of the weekend’s first round of club championship games was mentioned earlier on in the comments. It’s a question worthy of an answer and, according to today’s papers, that answer is a positive one.
The coverage in the papers today focuses on James Horan’s statement – presumably made at last night’s press event ahead of the June 8th Connacht semi-final against Roscommon – about refereeing inconsistencies and his suggestion that refs should be put in a semi-pro footing. Reports on what James had to say were carried today in the Irish Times, Irish Independent and Irish Examiner.
Those articles also contain some information on the injury situation in the squad and, as already noted, the position appears positive enough. We’re not without our injury problems at the minute but nothing untoward appears to have occurred on the club scene last weekend, which is obviously a major relief. Allied to positive news about players on the long-term injury list, this leaves us in a better position in terms of player availability than we’ve been in over the past few summers.
The bad news first. In that Examiner piece, James says that Jason Gibbons and Barry Moran are “extremely doubtful” for the Roscommon game, while he also confirms that Shane McHale is four or five weeks away from full fitness and so will not feature at Hyde Park either.
That same report, however, confirms (as do the pieces in the other two papers) that Chris Barrett and David Clarke are back in action, both having played for their respective clubs at the weekend. All three papers also state that the knocks currently being nursed by Enda Varley and Michael Conroy are of the minor variety which should mean that both are available for selection for Sunday week.
Aside from that lot, this week’s Mayo News (paper and digital versions) reports that Ger Cafferkey has recovered from the quad injury he picked up in the League semi-final and that Lee Keegan was due back in training this week following a bout of tonsillitis.
Overall, then, the squad appears to be in pretty good shape heading into the Connacht semi-final. Jason Gibbons will, of course, be a big loss for Hyde Park, given that he was arguably our stand-out performer during the League but hopefully we’ll see him back in action sooner rather than later during the summer.