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Kilkenny star O'Dwyer to join Kingdom


Willie O'Dwyer

Willie O'Dwyer

Willie O'Dwyer

FIVE-TIME All-Ireland winning Kilkenny hurler Willie O'Dwyer is poised to play for Kerry next year.

The 27-year-old Mullinavat clubman, who was a member of Kilkenny's famous four-in-a-row All-Ireland winning panel, is close to completing a move to the Christy Ring Cup champions, which would be a huge boost to John Meyler's plans.

Currently living in Killarney and working in Tralee, the Kilkenny native views the opportunity to join the Kerry set-up as a positive move.

O'Dwyer said: "I have spoken with John Meyler a few times about it. I'm happy enough to go ahead with it and it's about tying up the formalities of the transfer and that.

"I am living and working in Kerry at the moment and the fact that I am not getting a whole lot of hurling in, being away from home and Kilkenny, this would be the ideal opportunity to keep myself ticking over and keep the fitness levels up for the club at home as well."

Not involved in Kilkenny's senior panel since March 2010, after seven seasons on the squad, O'Dwyer admits Kerry hurling is at an exciting place right now: "Kerry have a good set-up at the moment, they are moving in the right direction under John (Meyler)."

If O'Dwyer's (pictured) inter-county switch to Kerry does get the green light, he will still be able to play his club hurling with Mullinavat, as Kerry compete at a level below Kilkenny in the All-Ireland series.

O'Dwyer scored 2-3 for Kilkenny in the '07 Leinster SHC final against Wexford, who had current Kerry manager Meyler in charge at the time. To date he has won five All-Irelands, three leagues, five Leinster senior titles, two All-Ireland U-21s and one All-Ireland minor, among others.