Paul Curran will attempt to have his college players released from Sigerson Cup semi-final duty on Friday as he prepares Ballymun Kickhams for their first All-Ireland SFC club final next month.
After being excused last week, James McCarthy, Dean Rock and Davey Byrne are expected to be involved with DCU against DIT, who have Sean George among their ranks later this week.
Curran is in an unusual situation as his selector Ken Robinson is the chief executive of sport at DCU.
“I’d be hoping that they’d be released, but I don’t know,” said Curran. “We’ll have to talk to [DCU’s] Niall Moyna and the management team.
“I understand both sides of it. I don’t think the games will do them any harm. I don’t like wrapping them up in cotton wool or anything like that, but we would like to have them.
“But look, it’s a month to the All-Ireland. We’d just be hoping that they’d play and maybe avoid injury. That’s all we want, because the games won’t do them any harm. They’re young men.”
Curran said he was forced to move Philly McMahon away from full-back because of George’s level of performance in training.
He was also full of praise for Alan Hubbard, who had done an expert marking role on Brian Looney, Dr Crokes’ player of the Munster championship.
“He was outstanding, wasn’t he? I think a lot of the talk this week was about their forwards, in particular Cooper — and Looney and O’Leary. And I think he quietened Looney. Not only was he superb in his primary duties in defence, but also getting forward, and won a couple of very important frees for us.”
However, Curran was particularly critical of Ted Furman’s overall performance, despite scoring the only goal of the game.
“Ted is a man to score goals, but I think Ted needs to bring something else to it as well.
“I don’t think it was a particularly good game from Ted. He worked hard enough, but I think there’s more in him and hopefully we’ll get that out of him the next day.”
Meanwhile, Dr Crokes captain Kieran O’Leary admitted Ballymun Kickhams were the fitter side.
“They just seemed to be very fit and ran us ragged from defence upwards. We just didn’t know how to handle them in the first half.
“In the second half we came to terms with how to handle it but we just came up against a better team.
“Ballymun stopped us playing the way we wanted to play.
“There are lads inside in the dressing room absolutely disgusted that they couldn’t put a performance together. That’s just the way it goes.”
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