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Wexford's PJ Nolan joins Wicklow hurling panel

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Former Wexford hurler PJ Nolan has joined the Wicklow Senior hurling panel ahead of the Christy Ring Cup opener against Mayo in Aughrim in May. Photo: Ray McManus/Sportsfile

Former Wexford hurler PJ Nolan has joined the Wicklow Senior hurling panel ahead of the Christy Ring Cup opener against Mayo in Aughrim in May. Photo: Ray McManus/Sportsfile

Former Wexford hurler PJ Nolan has joined the Wicklow Senior hurling panel ahead of the Christy Ring Cup opener against Mayo in Aughrim in May. Photo: Ray McManus/Sportsfile

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Former Wexford hurler PJ Nolan has joined the Wicklow panel as they prepare for their Christy Ring opener against Mayo in Aughrim on May 15.

The Kilrush-Askamore club man has trained on a number of occasions with Seamus Murphy's charges in recent weeks and will try to balance the Garden County fixtures with his club's championship campaign in Wexford.

Nolan made his Wexford Senior debut against Waterford in the NHL in 2006, played 57 games in all and scored 0-52, and will be a major boost to a county team struggling somewhat at the scoring end of the field.

Wicklow manager Seamus Murphy says that with the rule coming in - ironically proposed by Wicklow - Nolan will only be able to play for the 2018 season with Wicklow and that with the Christy Ring coming up every little bit helps to try and get over the line.

"PJ is now a fully-fledged Wicklow player," said Seamus Murphy, "He's back in action with Kilrush-Askamore for the last seven or eight weeks after an operation in the middle of last year, so touch wood he will be ok to go for the Christy Ring," he added.

Seamus Murphy said that the former Wexford county player was approached by the Wicklow camp in relation to throwing his lot in with his neighbours and that his job as a teacher in Coolafancy allowed the move to take place.

"He's a very talented hurler who would have played anywhere from midfield up for Wexford. We're trying to get his fitness levels up, he lost that little bit of fitness and every passing week is a big help to him.

"We need everything to be as strong as we can for the Christy Ring and as long as he is serious in his approach then the Wicklow lads are men enough to know that he there for the right reasons," said Seamus Murphy.

The bad weather is hampering the preparations for the hurlers badly. The backroom team tried 14 pitches ahead of their practive game with Buffers Alley last Wednesday night before eventually playing it in Ballinakill after a brief respite from the heavy rains in the day or two leading up to it.

They were due to play Glynn-Barntown on Monday night but that had to be called off due to the rain and they will now set their sights on a practice clash with Carlow next Monday night.

Bray's Mikey Lee is also a welcome returnee to the Wicklow team having moved to Tipperary a few months ago. The former Bray star is travelling up and down for training and will be another boost for an attack relying all too heavily on Andy O'Brien.

A trip to Roscommon awaits Wicklow after their Christy Ring Cup opener to Mayo in Joule Park Aughrim before Seamu murphy's men will welcome Kildare to the county grounds for their third group game in the second tier competition.

Meanwhile, Mark Kenny will captain the Wicklow Senior footballers for their game against Limerick in Askinagap this Sunday evening with Brendan McCrea named at full-forward.


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