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Meehan opts out of start of league season

MICHAEL MEEHAN will sit out the opening stages of the National Football League as the Galway ace steps up his recovery from a serious ankle injury.

The prolific Caltra marksman endured an injury-blighted season, missing much of spring and early summer with a knee ligament problem, and then his comeback was shortlived after damaging his ankle.

But he's hopeful that new manager Tomás ó Flatharta can get Galway back on track after a disastrous 2010. "He has spoken to us and wants to freshen up the panel, and I think that will be good," Meehan said.

p OLLIE CANNING has confirmed there will be no U-turn on his decision to retire from inter-county hurling. "I asked Ollie to take time out before making a final decision," revealed Galway boss John McIntyre. "Ollie took that time and we had a good chat recently and he has decided to go. He owes Galway hurling nothing but he is a huge loss."

p TADHG KENNELLY will not be turning his back on the AFL, according to the Sydney Swans' new head coach. John Longmire is adamant that Kennelly will see out the final year on his current contract with the Swans, despite earlier hints from the Listowel man that he was considering a second homecoming with the Kerry footballers.

p FORMER Limerick coach Donie Buckley will link up with the Kerry footballers in 2011 - although he won't be formally joining Jack O'Connor's management team. This follows persistent attempts by O'Connor to get the Kerry native on board.

p THE Limerick hurling refusniks who declined to play for Justin McCarthy this season have all made themselves available for the coming campaign. New boss Donal O'Grady has confirmed that with the exception of Ollie Moran and Mark Foley, who have both retired, all the other 2010 absentees have "expressed an interest" in being involved.