I’d say most of us breathed a collective sigh of relief on Sunday evening at the news that the latest round of club championship activity hadn’t brought in its wake another clutch of injuries to members of the county panel. We’re still not out of the woods in that respect, though, as there’s one more round of club action scheduled for the weekend after next so we could yet be faced with further injury concerns this side of the Connacht final. Or not, as the case may be.
The Mayo News has a piece today by Mike Finnerty on the injury situation – here. The headline on this report claims that the weekend brought “mixed injury news” but in actual fact Mike is reporting on injuries that were already known about before the club matches were played at all.
Mike states that neither David Clarke nor Keith Higgins – both of whom came off against Roscommon with hamstring injuries – played at the weekend and that Alan Dillon, who looked well off the pace against the Rossies but played the full seventy minutes that day, didn’t appear for Ballintubber either.
Mike also states that Cathal Freeman, Chris Barrett, Cillian O’Connor and Michael Conroy all played no part in their respective clubs’ matches but he mentions that the latter was listed as a sub in Davitts’ clash with Crossmolina, a development that raised some eyebrows. Indeed, Mickey C had to go onto Twitter to explain that when he’d earlier tweeted that it was “great to be back involved in championship” this involvement only went as far as taking part in the warm-up.
Players who were out injured up till now but who, according to the above report, did feature at the weekend included Jason Doherty, Evan Regan, Barry Moran, Danny Geraghty, Brian Gallagher and Andy Moran. Andy made his first club appearance in almost a year last Sunday and notched 1-2 from play for Ballagh in their win over Garrymore.
Overall, then, the news from the weekend’s club action is way more positive than negative. With a number of players having already returned to action and others – notably Michael Conroy and Cillian O’Connor – likely to be ready to rejoin the fray come August, the panel seems to be getting stronger just as the knockout phase of the championship starts to come into view. That can’t be a bad thing.