LIAM RUSHE should be fit for next Saturday's crucial NHL Division 1B clash with Limerick in Croke Park despite coming off with a groin injury in Casement Park yesterday.
The former Young Hurler Of The Year lasted just six minutes of the second-half before being replaced by David Treacy, with Conal Keaney moving to centre-back and revelling in the final half hour of a lopsided win over Antrim.
Anthony Daly described the knock as "a slight groin injury", and indicated that the change was made with one eye on next Saturday, a match which is sure to have significant promotion ramifications.
Keaney, who started the match at wing-forward, finished as arguably the game's best player in a position he hasn't played in for Dublin or Ballyboden St Enda's since his late teens but it is likely that he will revert to the Sky Blue attack next Saturday.
"Keaney did very well there," Daly acknowledged. "Sure, we know he's a very good centre-back but you're kind of robbing Peter to pay Paul as well with the game he played against Offaly."
Daly also withdrew key forwards Danny Sutcliffe and Paul Ryan with almost 20 minutes remaining, an indication both of Dublin's dominance and the looming date with John Allen's Treaty County troops.
Limerick, like Dublin, boast a 100pc record in Division 1B after a narrow win over Carlow at the Gaelic Grounds yesterday, and a victory for either team would practically guarantee a spot in the division's final between the top two teams, a match which carries both the lure of promotion to 1A and a top-flight league semi-final spot.
"We always knew it was going to be a big one," insisted Daly. "Even if we had lost one of the other two, it was always going to be a big one. They'll be looking forward to playing in Croke Park and we'll look forward to it too.
"You could be caught very handy. We were nearly caught two weeks ago and we were lucky enough we got the cushion out there today."
As yet, Stephen Hiney has not returned to the match day squad and though he was present in Belfast yesterday, he was not amongst the listed Dublin substitutions.
It is unlikely, however, that Daly will tinker too much with his winning line-up for Limerick's visit, although he insisted a change of attitude was vital.
"We were inclined to stand off today and if you stand off at this level, you'll be beaten to the ball. That happened today so we need to attack every ball against Limerick," he explained.