Monday 16 December 2019

Clare dual stars Collins brothers to miss final

Clare manager Colm Collins
Clare manager Colm Collins

Jackie Cahill

CLARE manager Colm Collins has confirmed that he is planning without sons Padraic and Sean for Saturday's Allianz Football League Division 4 final against Tipperary at Croke Park.

Both of Clare's dual stars are committed to a training camp in Portugal with the county's senior hurlers and will be unavailable for the visit to GAA HQ.

Collins confirmed: "The two boys will be with Davy (Fitzgerald) in Portugal on a training camp.

"Other than that we're fine. That's an opportunity for somebody else – that's the way I'd look at that. We have a good panel – we've trained hard all year and hopefully the people that come in will grab the opportunity."

Collins also thanked Fitzgerald for his co-operation this year as the Banner County's hurling and football camps reached a compromise on the use of the Collins brothers.

"I'd sincerely like to thank the hurling management for their co-operation. Everything has worked out fine – I'm delighted that it has," Collins said. "I'm a big believer in dual players. It takes a bit of work. Obviously Clare hurlers are in great position – they're All-Ireland champions and fair play to them for co-operating with us and giving the boys the opportunity to play football."

Collins has described Saturday's tie as "the icing on the cake" after Clare sealed promotion to Division 3 for the 2015 campaign.

And he is now relishing the prospect of managing a team at Croke Park for the very first time – seven months after the county's stunning All-Ireland SHC success at the Drumcondra venue.

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"We had a fantastic day there last year. At the time, when we were leaving there we didn't think that the next time we'd be back there that it would be with the footballers," Collins added.

"It's a lovely reward and the GAA should be commended for this, for fellas that work extremely hard in the third and fourth divisions, that they get an opportunity to play there."

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