There’s the usual interesting mix of stories in the Mayo News this week but the one that’ll interest most people, I reckon, is the one about Keith Higgins not travelling to New York for our opening run-out in the championship on the 10th of May in order to play instead the day before for the hurlers against Kerry in the Christy Ring. Fair enough, you may say, given that we have so many backs (especially half-backs) to choose from and, as he’s the star man for the hurlers, their need is probably greater than the footballers for the weekend in question. Set against this, however, it needs to be recalled that these are the same hurling hoors from the Kingdom against whom Keith broke his arm in a Christy Ring tie back in June 2007.
That injury, of course, ended his football year as well as his hurling one and, in the process, meant that he was unable to line out for the footballers in either of our qualifier matches the following month. While there’s little danger of the Kerrymen clocking Keith again on the 9th of May, it’s not beyond the bounds of possibility that he could sustain another serious injury while playing hurling over the course of the summer. Admirable and all as his commitment to the hurlers is, as long as Keith is willing to put himself in harm’s way playing with the small ball, the risk that he won’t be available for the footballers when we really need him has to be all the greater. Only Keith himself can say whether or not the risk is worth it but, for my money at least, I doubt that it is.
Elsewhere in the Mayo News, there’s an interesting feature on the ambitious McHale Park redevelopment, while Sean Rice goes through the options for our championship line-up, in the process taking a gratuitous swipe at calls for the return to the squad of what he terms as “sunshine footballers”. Care to name any names there, Sean?