Triple injury blow casts shadow over Treaty
Limerick hurlers have been hit with a potential treble blow ahead of their All-Ireland semi-final on August 18.
Seanie Tobin and Kevin Downes are both facing a race against time to be ready for the match after sustaining foot injuries in the last few days, while Shane Dowling, Tobin's potential replacement, is nursing a shoulder problem.
All three injuries were picked up at training since last week's Munster final triumph, and after the highs of last week it has the potential to change the mood in the county in the coming weeks.
Tobin has his foot in a boot after fracturing a metatarsal and damaging tendons and is the most serious concern as his type of injury often take up to four weeks to repair properly.
Downes has a broken toe and will be a doubt for his club Na Piarsaigh's championship match against Patrickswell on Saturday week.
Downes has been among the cavalry of young substitutes who John Allen has thrown into the last quarter of both championship matches against Tipperary and Cork. He scored two points in the Munster final against the Rebels.
There are further concerns over James Ryan, who injured a hamstring, and Niall Moran, giving the Limerick management plenty of concern over the next three weeks.
Wing-back Paudie O'Brien is expected to recover from an ankle injury but may not play for his club in next week's championship.
The Treaty squad has eased off training this week to allow players to prepare for their club games next week. Last week Allen admitted that one of the problems they faced at this time of year was an absence of competitive challenge games.
He stressed how internal games would be their staple diet ahead of a semi-final against either Galway, Clare or Kilkenny.