Monday 25 September 2017

McCarthy urges Whelan to work way back from ban

Jason Whelan, Dublin
Jason Whelan, Dublin
Colm Keys

Colm Keys

James McCarthy has described the eight-week suspension handed down to his Dublin and Ballymun Kickhams colleague Jason Whelan as a blow but thinks it won't bring an end to his inter-county career.

Whelan accepted the penalty from the Leinster Competition Controls Committee on Wednesday night, proposed for an action that involves inflicting injury recklessly on an opponent.

"It's going to be a blow. Jason would have had a good opportunity to play league games but it has been dealt with now and there's nothing we can do about it now," McCarthy said.

"I'm sure he'll keep his head down and he'll work hard over the next few weeks."

Leinster Council's CCC had launched an investigation into an incident during the Dublin v DCU O'Byrne Cup match last week when an allegation was made to referee David Gough that a DCU player had been on the receiving end of a bite.

McCarthy doubles as a Dublin and DCU player but is currently recovering from a groin injury that he carried towards the end of last year's All-Ireland championship and into the Dublin championship.

He expects to be available for Dublin for the second league match against Westmeath on February 9.

"It only came on me about July/August, just one of those groin injuries ... not sure exactly what it was," he added.

"Hopefully I'm on top of it now, fingers crossed. It was more of a build-up over the last couple of years.

"It's the longest break I've ever had but it's good to get it. I kind of needed it, to be honest. I've picked up a few knocks here and there."

McCarthy is in no doubt that his problems were related to over-use from his engagement with Dublin and Ballymun, who reached last year's All-Ireland club final.

"The last two and a half to three years have been busy with Ballymun, Dublin and going well with the college, jumping from one thing to the next," he said.

"Losing the All-Ireland club final will be with me for the rest of my career, the rest of my life. The club All-Ireland is so hard to get to. You saw last year that we got beaten in the (Dublin) final replay by Vincent's. I don't know if we'll get another shot at it, I hope we do.

"I think with Ballymun we will be there or thereabouts in the Dublin championship for the next few years, but it is so hard to win."

Irish Independent

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