The Tipperary man is due to play in the finals of the North American tournament in Gaelic Park at the weekend. Clare’s David Forde and Wexford’s David O’Connor have been called into the panel.
Ahead of another hectic weekend of county championship action, Monaleen are concerned about the fitness of Maurice Gavin ahead of the Limerick SFC final against Adare at the Gaelic grounds.
He is making a slow recovery from a broken finger and must be considered doubtful for a final that takes on added significance because of Adare’s one point victory over them in the round robin series.
Twenty-four years have elapsed since their last county title win and it’s 16 years since they last contested the final.
Monaleen will have county goalkeeper Alan Kitson available to them, along with Peter Russell, Alan McEntee, Dave McAuley and the Boyle brothers Ciaran and Killian, all of whom have worn the county jersey at minor level.
Adare will need little or no motivation for the final, given their capture of the hurling title. It’s a feat that hasn’t been achieved since the glory days of the Claughaun club, and it would also be another huge feather in the cap of Dave Keane if Adare could win.
Keane, who has had phenomenal success at hurling level with both club and county, was an impressive footballer himself with his former club
Passage in Cork, with whom he won county junior and intermediate championship medals in successive years.
He was denied the chance of playing in the senior final the following year, losing in the semi-finals to St Finbarr’s.
The final offers Donncha Sheehan the chance to emulate the feat of his father Dan who was a member of the Claughaun team of 1971 which won the double.
Club secretary Kevin O’Mahony admitted that demands of both codes have been problematic.
“A lot of work has been done to get us to where we are today, and it would be an incredible achievement if we manage to win. There are 11 dual players involved and you can take it there will be a lot of effort put in by those lads and their colleagues to complete the double.”
County seniors Conor Fitzgerald and Stephen Laffin spearhead the Adare challenge along with inter-county hurler Mark Foley, Aidan Rahilly, Noel O’Mahony, who played senior with Kerry for a time, and Michael Clifford.
Meanwhile 20 miles up the road, Liscannor and Kilmurry-Ilbrickane meet in the Clare SFC final in Cusack Park, with the latter favoured to win.
Liscannor are chasing their first title win since 1940 while Kilmurry’s last success was in 1993. It will be the first senior final between the clubs.
“We have huge respect for Liscannor,” said Kilmurry official Martin Hanrahan. “If it was anyone else we were playing we wouldn’t begrudge them a win.
“Brendan Moloney is our only injury worry. He has had a leg in plaster for the last couple of weeks, purely as a precaution, but has only a 50/50 chance of playing.
“Beating teams like Doonbeg and St Senan’s has raised our hopes considerably, but it would be foolhardy in the extreme to underestimate Liscannor.”
Kilmurry’s backbone are the O’Dwyer brothers Odran, Michael, Peter and Robert, and Aidan Moloney, Dermot Coughlan and Martin O’Connor.
Joe Considine said Liscannor have no fear of Kilmurry and go into the game confident in their own ability to get a result. “We have no injury worries, everybody is eagerly looking forward to the final and we’ll be going for the win.”
Liscannor’s challenge will be led by Joe, his brother Brian, Ronan Slattery, Kieran Considine and Darragh Blake.