Galway’s 2017 All-Ireland-winning captain David Burke is in a race to be fit for Saturday’s Leinster SHC final showdown with Kilkenny at Croke Park.
Burke suffered an ankle injury in the 0-27 to 0-21 win over Dublin last Saturday week and has not been able to train since, but he has not been ruled out.
Another former skipper Pádraic Mannion has been cleared to play after also coming off with an ankle injury in that final round-robin game when Henry Shefflin’s men continued their unbeaten run through Leinster.
Galway are also sweating on the fitness of Brian Concannon who picked up a hamstring injury in that win and selector Kevin Lally said they would give every player as much time as possible to recover.
“David Burke has an ankle injury. He didn’t train on Saturday. We are back on the field on Tuesday evening so we will see how it goes with him. He has been in a protective boot since so he will be assessed and we’ll see how he is. We don’t know at the minute.
“Pádraic Mannion is fine. He had an ankle injury but he’s fine now, while Brian Concannon is carrying a slight hamstring injury and he will be assessed throughout the week.
“We played five games in six weeks and it was hugely demanding, so it has been good to get a two-week break and it has given us a chance to really look at players. The competition for places is really good,” he said.
Lally said that the return to fitness of Jason Flynn is a big boost. The 2017 All-Ireland winner was out of action since suffering a serious hamstring injury back in January but he made his return off the bench in the win over Dublin.
“Jason Flynn is 100 per cent again and that’s a massive boost. He has great experience around the group and it’s a good time to get him in around the group as well and he’s been brilliant since he came back in,” added Lally.
Lally said that while the 7pm start in Croke Park on a Bank Holiday Saturday didn’t suit players or fans, they were just delighted to be back in the provincial final.
“It’s probably difficult on everybody. Even from a players’ point of view, it is going to be a late night home, from a fan’s perspective it is going to be difficult getting to Dublin and getting down from Dublin. I know people have remarked in terms of hotel prices being expensive so it isn’t ideal but obviously it is a Leinster final and we are just delighted to be there,” added Lally.