Thursday 18 January 2018

Earley to help Lilies blossom in summer

KILDARE boss Kieran McGeeney has received a double boost with news that both Dermot Earley and Mikey Conway should be fit for the start of the Leinster championship following positive updates on the extent of their knee injuries.

Earley had a scan on Monday night and the Lilywhite medics are now hopeful that the All Star midfielder has not ruptured his cruciate ligament.

The veteran midfielder will definitely miss Kildare's final NFL Division 2 clash with Meath and the likelihood is that he'll be out for at least a month, but he should be back in the frame well before Kildare's Leinster SFC opener against Louth or Longford on June 5.

Long-term absentee Conway has seen his tendonitis subside and he is now expected to resume training within the next four to six weeks.

Meanwhile, Galway hurling selector Joe Connolly says last year's drubbing by Dublin will give his men plenty of incentive next Sunday.

Connolly said that the high-flying Tribesmen will want to put the record straight in Pearse Stadium.

"The only time we were humiliated last year was when Dublin beat us. They out-hurled us, out-fought us and out-thought us. They absolutely decimated us," said Connolly.

The 1980 All-Ireland winning captain said that it was a huge boost that Iarla Tannian's injury was not as serious as first feared and that he has now returned to action.

"Iarla is a great a talent. He is a big strong lad and was great to see him coming as he is a great striker off both left and right. He'd obviously be an asset going into the summer.

"He is still feeling a slight discomfort in the hand. It was a hairline fracture but it is still a break," added Connolly.

Galway footballers have enjoyed a couple of positive results on the field, and Joe Kernan has been further boosted off the field with a number of long-term injuries clearing up.

Thomas Fahy (ankle), Darren Mullahy (collarbone) and Alan Burke (groin) have all returned to training, but according Kernan, the Derry match might come a bit too soon for Mullahy.

"Darren is back in full training and has started to take part in full contact activities since last week.

"Thomas is also back in full training so hopefully he'll be available if selected for the Derry match. Alan seems to reacting well to the training so far and hopefully he'll be able to take part in some form against Derry," said Kernan.

Irish Independent

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