Louth forward Shane Lennon has confirmed that he will not be back playing for the county until next year.
Peter Fitzgerald's men are preparing for their Leinster Championship opener against Westmeath on Sunday week without Lennon who had to undergo hip surgery last month.
The Kilkerley Emmets clubman missed the Allianz League with hip and groin problems. At first it was thought that the injury was the increasingly common osteitis pubic condition, but an MRI scan revealed a more serious diagnosis for Lennon.
Speaking at the launch of the Leinster GAA Hurling and Football Championships yesterday, he spoke about the injury and his road to recovery over the next few months.
"I'm going to miss the Championship (with Louth). I had an operation on my hip three weeks ago," explained Lennon.
"It's an extra piece of bone in my hip and it has been tearing away all the cartilage. There's a lot of wear and tear. I was up with the surgeon last week and he's happy with the way the operation went.
"It's career threatening. There is a young lad who went in the same day as me and his (operation) didn't go well. He has to go for another two operations over the next two years."
Lennon is remaining positive about his comeback and should his recovery go to plan, he is hoping to get back playing for his club towards the end of the summer.
"August, all going well, is when I hope to get back. I'm back on the bike and the cross trainer at the moment," he added.
"I'd be hoping to get back for the club Championships in Louth and build on it for next year."