Wednesday 14 November 2018

Galvin and Cooper raring to go but 'twin towers' likely to miss out

Cliona Foley

COLM Cooper and Paul Galvin have both been passed fit to start in Sunday's All-Ireland final despite recent injury niggles.

But Kerry could yet start without both of their so-called 'twin towers' as Kieran Donaghy is not expected to be in their first 15 and Tommy Walsh is one of three men chasing two hotly contested spots in the Kingdom's forward line.

Kerry have already played down injury fears over Cooper but Galvin, who has been even more valuable to them this summer, has had a stomach muscle injury that restricted his training. However, he is now also recovered.

Donaghy is not expected to start despite his recovery from a foot injury. However, it is believed that Walsh is vying with captain Darran O'Sullivan and Donnacha Walsh for two places in their attack.

If the big Kerins O'Rahillys man doesn't start, Kerry's first 15 are likely to be the very same that dispatched Meath in the semi-finals. That side had Galvin, Tadhg Kennelly and Walsh on the '45 with Cooper, Declan O'Sullivan and Darran O'Sullivan in the full-forward line.

Cork's only worry is a minor shoulder injury to corner-back Ray Carey and dual star Eoin Cadogan is believed to be on standby if the Clyda Rovers defender suffers any setback.

Meanwhile, Kerry manager Jack O'Connor has lauded converted centre-back Mike McCarthy and revealed how he persuaded the former All Star full-back out of his two-year retirement this season.

"I know he's defied the odds a bit, but class is permanent and that man is a natural enough athlete," O'Connor said.

"He was marooned in the full-back line for years. There was a great footballer somewhere inside that wasn't being expressed," he added.

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