Shefflin and Mullally fit as Cats chase big win

DEFENDING champions Kilkenny have named an unchanged team from the side which beat Clare for Sunday's Allianz NHL clash with Dublin at Nowlan Park.

Henry Shefflin and Paddy Mullally, who both picked up heavy knocks in last weekend's match, have been cleared to play.

Mullally still has six stitches in two separate facial injuries and only returned to work yesterday.

Shefflin injured his neck and was rushed to hospital after the game. However, it appears he will be fully recovered for Sunday.

The Cats need a big win, something in the order of 15 points, if they are to make the top section of the second phase of the competition. A draw between Clare and Waterford would close the door on the champions. But if there is a definite result in Ennis a big home win could fire Kilkenny through to the top section.

Dublin manager Humphrey Kelleher has been forced to defer selection because of a flu bug.

"A lot of lads are suffering from head colds so we won't have a clear picture until training tonight," he said.

Definitely out, however, is promising corner-back Aodan de Paor, who badly damaged a hamstring in last weekend's defeat by Laois.

Ollie Moran and Sean O'Connor, introduced as second-half substitutes by Limerick in their win over Wexford last Sunday, are in from the start for Sunday's visit to Antrim, replacing James O'Brien and Michael McKenna.

Offaly, meanwhile, have left vacancies at left corner-back and midfield for their game with Wexford.

David Franks, who lined out at left corner-back against Cork last Sunday, received a nasty hand injury, while Brian Carroll started the Cork game at midfield but is now named at left corner-forward.

The likelihood is that dual player Neville Coughlan, who was involved with the footballers last weekend, will come back into the side at midfield.

Colin Lynch is abroad on holidays and will miss Clare's game against Waterford.

Banner manager Anthony Daly will not put the final touches to his team selection until after training tomorrow night because of injury problems concerning four of his key players, Brian Lohan, Jamesie O'Connor, Barry Murphy and Brian Quinn.

Lohan has a hamstring problem, O'Connor is carrying an ankle injury, Brian Murphy has a hamstring complaint, while Quinn has a hand injury.

Derry expect to have three players back for their Division 2 game with Roscommon. Paul Braniff has recovered from a hamstring injury, while both Garrett Johnson and Gearoid Adair have served out recent suspension terms.

KILKENNY (SH) v Dublin: J. McGarry, M. Phelan, N. Hickey, M. Kavanagh, S. Dowling, P. Barry, J.J. Delaney, D. Lyng, P. Mullally, J. Hoyne, H. Shefflin, C. Phelan, E. Brennan, M. Comerford, D.J. Carey.

OFFALY (SH v Wexford): B Mullins; B Teehan, G Oakley, A.N. Other; K Brady, B Whelahan, C Cassidy; AN Other, N Mannion; G Hanniffy, R Hanniffy, B Murphy; M Cordial, J Brady, B Carroll.

LIMERICK (v Antrim):A Shanahan, M Cahill, TJ Ryan, B Carroll, D Reale, P Sheahan, M Foley, O Moran, P Tobin, P O'Grady, JP Sheahan, D Sheehan, A O'Shaughnessy, S O'Connor, D Ryan.

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