clare boss hopes hurling stars can play dual role
SEVERAL of Clare's top hurlers, including Podge Collins, could yet double up and also play Gaelic football for the Banner next year, writes Cliona Foley.
Eight of Clare's All-Ireland winning hurlers – Collins, his brother Sean, Conor McGrath, Conor Ryan, Liam Markham, Brendan Bugler, Fergal Lynch and Cathal McInerney – are part of the Cratloe team that have reached the Munster SFC decider, where they will face Colm Cooper's Dr Crokes.
Podge Collins was man of the match in last weekend's county final and Cratloe are coached by his father Colm, who has taken over the reins from Mick O'Dwyer as the Banner's new senior football manager.
Colm Collins revealed yesterday that he has already had some preliminary discussions with hurling boss Davy Fitzgerald about the possibility of some players playing for the county in both codes next year.
"Hopefully we will be able to share some players and come to an agreement. I don't see why not," Collins said.
Cratloe only won their first Clare senior football title last Saturday and, the following day, beat Waterford champions Ballinacourty to reach the Munster SFC final in an amazing 24 hours for the club. A delay in finishing the Clare championship gave Cratloe a mammoth task but they rose to the challenge admirably.
Podge Collins says that he has not made any decision yet about a dual future and stressed he will not do so until Cratloe's season has finished.
But the All Star admitted that "it's definitely a talking point at the dinner table at the moment."
He and his brother Sean have played football at all underage levels for Clare.
Cork's Aidan Walsh has just reversed the recent trend nationally and decided to play a dual role for the Rebels next season.