By Eoghan Cormican
Cillian O’Hanlon has been ruled out of Cork’s Munster SFC semi-final against Tipperary this Saturday, with Seán Powter, Paul Kerrigan and Brian O’Driscoll likely to also miss out because of injury.
Midfielder O’Hanlon started five of Cork’s Division 2 league outings, but a hamstring injury picked up while playing for Kilshannig in the North Cork JFC earlier this month means he won’t feature at Semple Stadium this weekend.
Management are sweating on the fitness of Brian O’Driscoll (hamstring), Seán Powter (hamstring) and Paul Kerrigan (finger). The latter pair are to see their consultants today to learn if they can tog on Saturday.
Stephen Sherlock (neck) and Donncha O’Connor (hamstring) have also been sidelined of late, but management are confident they will be available for selection.
Powter, nominated for young footballer of the year in 2017, pulled his hamstring during Cork’s opening league game at home to Tipperary - the Premier won on a scoreline of 3-16 to 1-16 - in late January.
“He has a lot of running work done,” Cork manager Ronan McCarthy told the Irish Examiner. “It is just to get the go ahead to go up another level in his sprint work.”
Last year’s captain Paul Kerrigan damaged his finger during Nemo Rangers’ club campaign and had to undergo surgery in the wake of their All-Ireland final loss.
“Paul can do anything where the ball isn’t coming at him full pace. A shooting drill is no problem, but he can’t do or hasn’t done contact training or ball handling drills where the ball is coming at him at real pace,” McCarthy continued.
“Paul is due to see a consultant and that could be a case of the consultant telling Paul that he can’t do anything for another couple of weeks. Or it could be a case of Paul being told he can resume training.
“I am not ruling [Paul, Seán or Brian] out because they have not been ruled out. I would say it is unlikely.”
The Cork team will be named this evening at 9.30pm.
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