Collins relishing return to hurling set-up
Published 15/03/2016 | 02:30
Clare's Podge Collins says it is great to be back playing after being out of action for ten months with a cruciate injury.
The 24-year-old, who concentrated on football at inter-county level last year, made his first appearance for Clare hurlers since 2014 when he came on in Sunday's facile 2-28 to 1-9 win over Kerry.
Collins has been out of action since suffering a cruciate ligament injury at the end of May while playing for Cratloe in a club hurling clash against Ballyea.
He has battled back to recovery and is making himself available to both the Clare hurlers and footballers this season, with his dad Colm again in charge of the footballers.
Collins said it will take him time to get up to the pace of inter-county hurling, with the Bannermen taking on Limerick next Sunday in Ennis in a winner-takes-all Division 1B promotion clash. "Getting used to the pace of it now will be a bit tough but getting a first day out in nine or ten months is great. I found it hard when I came on, the pace is very high.
"There were a lot of hits going in. It's great to see how far Kerry have come in recent years. I know the scoreline was big but I don't think it reflects how much they have developed. It was a good physical intense game and great to get a run."
Collins, an All-Star when Clare won the All-Ireland in 2013, said that Sunday's clash with Limerick will be a perfect test as they prepare for the championship.
"It really starts from here now. There is a lot at stake. When you go down to 1B it's a very tough division to get out of. We were fortunate enough to go to Wexford and get a result. So it all lies on next week against Limerick."