Friday 19 January 2018

Donegal's Cassidy confirms 'that's the end of it'

Cliona Foley

Cliona Foley

KEVIN Cassidy has closed the door on a possible return to the Donegal panel. The axed double All Star last night extinguished any hopes of a return, fuelled last week after Jim McGuinness hinted that there could be a way back for the Gweedore man.

However, the 30-year old wing-back last night confirmed that he had played his last game for Donegal. Asked by TG4's Dara O Cinneide: "Have you or Jim McGuinness closed the door on your return to Donegal, is that the end of it?" Cassidy replied: "That is the end of it, yes."

"The season has started, the lads are back in training. Even for me, it would have been very difficult to return and put in the same level of effort."

Elsewhere, Kilkenny have lost their second hurler to retirement in a week, with Carrickshock defender John Dalton announcing that he is opting out of the Cats panel.

The 26-year-old's surprise decision came just 24 hours after eight-time All-Ireland winner Michael Kavanagh called it a day.

Dalton has told management that he hasn't the time to commit himself 100pc to training this year and said he doesn't envisage things changing in the immediate future.

The county board confirmed that he has relayed his intentions to management and said the door would be left open for him if he changes his mind. Dalton won two All-Ireland minor and one All-Ireland U-21 medal before joining the senior panel in 2006, and has since won five senior All-Irelands, six Leinster titles, two National Leagues and a Fitzgibbon Cup.

Dalton brings to five the number of Kilkenny players who have retired over the winter, following James 'Cha' Fitzpatrick, Eddie Brennan, PJ Ryan and Kavanagh in hanging up his inter-county boots.

The All-Ireland club JFC final between Derrytresk of Tyrone and Clonbur of Galway looks set to go ahead tomorrow as a rumoured last-gasp appeal against the suspension of seven of their players had not materialised last night.

Meanwhile, Meath's Seamus Kenny has been passed fit for their Division 2 NFL derby with Westmeath and midfielder Daithi Waters will miss Wexford's clash with Sligo after receiving a two-week ban for his double-yellow card dismissal against Cavan last week.

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Irish Independent

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