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Sunday 4 December 2016

Jim Gavin: I expect Cian O'Sullivan to be fit for All Ireland final

O'Sullivan set to beat hamstring injury

Cian O'Sullivan, Dublin, in action against Aidan O'Shea
Cian O'Sullivan, Dublin, in action against Aidan O'Shea

JIM GAVIN fully expects Cian O'Sullivan to win his All-Ireland final fitness race and to feature against Kerry on Sunday week.

Fears for the Dublin centre-back were sparked when he was helped off the field after Saturday's replay against Mayo, having pulled up with hamstring trouble at the end.

But his manager has now delivered an upbeat medical update.

"Cian got cramp in the game so I would expect him to be available for selection," Gavin declared. "He's been working hard with the medical team, and we had a session (on Tuesday night) and he there was on his feet - he was in good spirits and he's progressing well, and the boys are very confident."

The 2013 All Star has a history of hamstring injuries, but Gavin argued that this is "actually a benefit because he knows exactly where he's at. This isn't the first time that he's had it, so he's very accustomed to the process and he knows his body quite well ... he's very confident that he can make it.

"If the player is saying that to me, well I'd be confident as well."

Dublin selector Declan Darcy suggested O'Sullivan's setback was due to "a little bit of exhaustion" but he highlighted some Kilkenny hurlers who "defied the odds" to play against Galway last Sunday.

"It's amazing what an All-Ireland final can do to the healing powers of some players. We don't know, but we're optimistic," Darcy concluded.

If he fails to make it, Mick Fitzsimons and John Small will be among those pressing for a call-up.

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