Powter set for Cork return but Kingston faces another spell out
Cork football boss Ronan McCarthy has received a timely boost as the Rebels begin their championship preparations with the news that Seán Powter is likely to return to club action this weekend.
Powter - nominated as Young Footballer of the Year last season - has been sidelined with a hamstring injury picked up in Cork's opening Division 2 tie in January but the versatile Douglas flyer is expected to play his part in the Cork SFC this weekend.
There is bad news for club-mate and Rebel hurler Shane Kingston, however, as he will miss most of April due to an ankle injury. Kingston played an integral part as Cork scorched to Munster SHC success last season but the pacey attacker has had an interrupted preparation under new boss John Meyler ahead of a busy provincial campaign.
Another manager ruing an injury setback is Cavan's Mattie McGleenan, who will be without influential attacker Dara McVeety for their Ulster SFC opener with Donegal next month.
The Crosserlough forward - who played a huge part in Cavan's promotion to Division 1 - is expected to be on the sidelines for at least six to eight weeks after tearing his hamstring in last Sunday's Division 2 final defeat to Roscommon.
It is a massive blow to McGleenan with McVeety also likely to miss their possible quarter-final clash with Derry, should they get the better of Declan Bonner's men in Ballybofey next month.
Elsewhere, the Galway SFC has been postponed until after next month's eagerly-anticipated Connacht SFC quarter-final against Mayo as the Tribesmen give full focus to their county efforts following an encouraging Division 1 campaign.
Despite the previous two championships both being played before Galway's provincial opener, county board officials have decided to change tack this year and hold off until after the Castlebar tie on May 13.
It allows Kevin Walsh's squad to focus all attention on toppling Mayo and dumping them out of the race for JJ Nestor Cup for the third successive year with club action expected to commence in the wake of that fixture.
Meanwhile, Terence McWilliams will succeed Mickey Moran - who won four Derry senior championship titles and three Ulster titles - as manager with the all-conquering Slaughtneil footballers.
It will be McWilliams' second term with the Derry giants after Moran stepped down following their All-Ireland semi-final defeat to Nemo Rangers.