Callanan to miss entire league campaign
TIPPERARY forward Seamus Callanan will miss the entire National Hurling League with a serious ankle injury.
It is understood that the Drom & Inch hitman went under the knife in Dublin yesterday to rectify the problem and has been ruled out of action for up to four months.
Callanan's latest injury setback leaves the 23-year-old facing a race against time to be fit for the Premier County's Munster SHC quarter-final against Limerick at Semple Stadium on May 27.
It is the second year in succession that Callanan will not hurl in the league -- he was ruled out of the 2011 campaign after breaking his collarbone last February.
Callanan returned refreshed in time for the championship, however, and registered 2-10 in three matches as Tipp captured the Munster crown.
Tipp, meanwhile, warmed up for the forthcoming Waterford Crystal Cup campaign with a useful workout against UCC in Boherlahan last Sunday.
Declan Ryan's charges ran out 2-26 to 0-25 winners against the students following a game that was played over four quarters of 20 minutes.
Newcomer Adrian Ryan from Templederry Kenyons showed up well at centre-forward while John O'Neill, an All-Ireland U-21 medallist in 2010 and senior panel member last year, also caught the eye.
Gerry Walsh from Carrick Swan was another to impress at corner-back. Burgess clubman Shane Maher, back in the panel after opting out in 2011, performed solidly at wing-back.
Sunday's game offered a number of players on Ryan's extended panel an opportunity to stake a claim for a place on the manager's whittled-down squad.
Conor O'Brien and Timmy Hammersley, dropped last year after featuring in the 2010 All-Ireland senior success, were both involved in the weekend workout.
Tipperary begin their competitive season on Sunday, January 22, with a home tie against Limerick IT in the Waterford Crystal Cup.
Meanwhile, Louth football manager Peter Fitzpatrick has revealed that he held productive transfer talks with Armagh's John Murtagh last week.
However, Fitzpatrick doesn't expect the 28-year-old to feature against Meath in next weekend's big O'Byrne Cup derby as the necessary paperwork may not be processed in time.
With Louth attackers Shane Lennon and Mark Brennan facing lengthy injury lay-offs, Fitzpatrick could do with options in attack, and Murtagh certainly fits the bill.
Murtagh, who plays his club football in Dublin with Parnells, scored 0-3 for the Dubs Stars club selection against Dublin in the annual New Year's Day challenge.
"I met him (Murtagh) last week and he expressed an interest in coming to Louth," confirmed Fitzpatrick. "He wants to come to Louth and we want him here. He's a talented forward, a scoring forward. I've seen him play numerous times and he's young.
"Nothing is nailed down yet -- I'm waiting for him to come back to me but he's certainly a big addition to the county. But there's no chance that he'll be available for the Meath game next Sunday, unless the inter-county transfer goes through and I can't see it happening that quick."