Monday 18 February 2019

Walsh is primed to boost Kilkenny charge

BRIAN CODY is upbeat on the prospects of Tommy Walsh being restored to full fitness for the Leinster SHC against Dublin or Galway on July 3.

Walsh (pictured, above right, at Saturday night’s victory over Wexford) wasn’t even listed among the subs for Kilkenny’s semi-final victory over Wexford on Saturday night, sidelined by a shoulder problem that has caused ongoing difficulties this season for the eight-time consecutive All Star.

But afterwards, the Kilkenny manager stressed that his wingback dynamo should be “ready to go in a week’s time”.

“If we had played him tonight, we were running the risk of further injury and we just don’t want that,” Cody explained. “Tommy is very, very fit; he has done all the physical training. But he has a slight shoulder problem at the moment that is not serious, from a long-term point of view.”

Meanwhile, Cody has hailed the competitive return of Henry Shefflin, just nine months after his injured knee failed to survive the rigours of an All-Ireland final.

“It’s a tribute to his commitment and never-say-die attitude, and to the lonely hours of just working away on his own,” enthused Cody. “When you see him back and you see the fitness levels he has, straight away, it’s just a testament to the kind of man he is. And it’s just a tremendous achievement to come back after two cruciate injuries like that, and get out there and play as if he hadn’t been away.”

The RTÉ ‘boycott’ waged by some of the GAA’s top managers, upset at the perceived demotion of commentator Brian Carthy, has fizzled out after barely a week. But campaign leader Mickey Harte fired a parting shot at media critics who denounced the tactic for their “easy-street and lazy journalism”, insisting the managers were not holding RTÉ to ransom.

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