Ryan adds fresh talent to panel for All-Ireland defence
NEW Tipperary hurling manager Declan Ryan has drafted four new players into his panel ahead of next year's All-Ireland title defence.
John O'Neill, Michael Gleeson, Sean Carey and John Coghlan are all talented All-Ireland medallists from the underage ranks and will add fresh impetus to Ryan's squad. Forward pair O'Neill and Carey, as well as defender Coghlan, played under Ryan in 2007 when Tipperary won the All-Ireland minor crown.
O'Neill and dual star Carey went on to play key roles in this year's comprehensive All-Ireland U-21 final victory against Galway. Coghlan missed out on the final through a controversial suspension, but was in superb form throughout the season.
Gleeson is the son of Thurles Sarsfields manager Michael, who was recently appointed as Tipperary selector alongside Ryan. Gleeson Jnr has been in superb form at midfield for Sarsfields in their march to next Sunday's AIB Munster club final against De La Salle of Waterford.
O'Neill was called into Liam Sheedy's 2010 Tipperary panel, but his season was decimated by a cruciate knee ligament injury. However, the former Harty Cup-winning forward made an impressive comeback and finished the season as an All-Ireland U-21 medallist.
Meanwhile, Tipp trainer Cian O'Neill oversaw a squad fitness test at UL last Sunday, and players have been handed individual strength and conditioning programmes to work on before training resumes in January.
One notable attendee was midfielder James Woodlock, who missed the entire 2010 campaign after suffering a horrific leg break.
In Galway, Ollie Canning has confirmed that he is retiring from the inter-county game. The classy Portumna defender has won every honour in the game except an All-Ireland medal and has four All Stars to his name.