Sheehan will be fit for semi-final

Bryan Sheehan, Kerry, receives medical treatment on the field before being substituted early in the game
Bryan Sheehan, Kerry, receives medical treatment on the field before being substituted early in the game

Paul Brennan

BRYAN Sheehan is expected to be fit to face Mayo in the All-Ireland semi-final after getting positive news on the injury that saw him depart Sunday's quarter-final win over Galway after just five minutes.

Sheehan, playing at midfield, overstretched awkwardly and pulled his hip flexor muscle, forcing the St Marys out of the action in the fifth minute and leaving him in considerable discomfort on Sunday evening. However, a scan showed that Sheehan didn't tear the muscle but merely strained it, and he is expected to be back in training next week.

The news on Stephen O'Brien is positive too, with the Kenmare man expected to resume training this week. O'Brien pulled his quad muscle at training the weekend before the Mayo came, and though he would have been able to play some part were it necessary, it was decided not to risk the forward against Galway.

Kerry resumed training last night and will begin to make their plans for the All-Ireland semi-final against Mayo, the first Championship meeting between the counties since the All-Ireland semi-final in 2011.

Team selector Mikey Sheehy says the focus now shifts to the Mayo game. "We're exactly where we want to be, getting ready for an All-Ireland semi-final and going in as underdogs. The main hope now is to get two great weeks of training into us and hope to avoid any injuries. We have no distractions now, with regard to club games or anything else, so we are really looking forward to it."

Speaking about Martin McHugh's comments on The Sunday Game regarding James O'Donoghue and Colm Cooper, Sheehy said: "I don't know what he was thinking really. I think he was looking for a bit of notice, a bit of controversy. James would be the first to admit he has a long way to go before being mentioned in the same breath as Gooch, and I think McHugh was totally wrong to bring Colm into it.

"I'd wonder if there wasn't some agenda behind the remarks. Perhaps with one eye on Donegal down the road I think he [McHugh] was trying to put extra pressure on James. But we've a lot more to be concerning ourselves with, with the Mayo game coming up, than with what Martin McHugh has to say."


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