Monday 5 December 2016

Bryan Sheehan to be named Kerry captain as busy year ends with more silverware

Published 28/12/2015 | 02:30

'Bryan Sheehan produced a powerful display against Waterville on St Stephen's day, scoring three points' Photo:Sportsfile
'Bryan Sheehan produced a powerful display against Waterville on St Stephen's day, scoring three points' Photo:Sportsfile

Bryan Sheehan is set to be named Kerry captain for 2016 after leading his club St Mary's to the South Kerry SFC title and maintaining a remarkable 15-game unbeaten streak.

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The retention of the Jack Murphy Cup with a 0-9 to 0-6 victory over Waterville on St Stephen's Day was notable, but it was the durability of Sheehan that stood out.

The five-time All-Ireland winner produced another powerful display, scoring three points, and allied with three from man of the match Niall O'Driscoll, the Maurice Fitzgerald-managed St Mary's withstood a second-half rally.

Victory for the Caherciveen side now means that Sheehan (30) looks certain to be Kerry's nominated captain in 2016, after playing in his 15th game since the Kingdom's All-Ireland final loss to Dublin on September 20.

The captaincy is usually determined by the winner of the previous year's county SFC but with South Kerry beating Legion, it is the divisional champions (St Mary's) who are given the honour of nominating a candidate.

Achievements

Sheehan's remarkable achievements this winter include a Kerry intermediate title with St Mary's, followed by a Munster crown and a South Kerry SFC title as well as lifting the Kerry SFC final as captain, but there won't be time for rest in the new year.

Before St Mary's can concentrate on their All-Ireland Intermediate semi-final at the end of January, they are involved in a four way play-off for the final promotion spot to the top flight of Kerry's County League, with games set for January 9 and 16.

Meanwhile, Sligo boss Niall Carew has hailed the return of All-Star Charlie Harrison and full-back Johnny Martyn as a "huge lift" so early in the season.

Harrison ruptured his cruciate ligament in March and missed the rest of the season but the St John's clubman is keen to get stuck into the new season according to Carew, while Martyn returns from an ankle problem.

"It's massive to have the two lads back in with us, especially with Ross Donovan gone," said Carew. "I'll be hoping to have the two of them back 100pc in time for the start of the league.

"Charlie is flying it again, we're trying to ease him back into it. Like Johnny, it's hard to get them to take it easy, they're so keen. We'll probably give them a run in the FBD League, but we need them. They're big players for us."

Martyn (34) had hoped to be a major player for Sligo last summer, having made a strong recovery from a stroke and heart surgery the previous year, but injury cut his comeback short.

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