Ross was man of the match on Sunday as the Dublin champions and 2009 All-Ireland winners overcame Portlaoise in the provincial quarter-final. It was a particularly impressive win as they fell seven points behind early on before eventually winning by three. Ross lined out at full-back but was only thrown the number three jersey when it emerged that his younger brother Rory was marooned in France with a foot injury. Rory is studying in France and while boss Paddy Carr refused to rule the All-Ireland U21 winner out for their November 21 semi-final against Garrycastle, Ross confirmed his sibling will be absent.
“I’d love if he did make it back but I don’t think he will,” said Ross. “He is disappointed. He’s just over there and he can’t get back with the strikes. He has an injury as well. I think it’s a situation of leave him be and hopefully he gets the injury sorted and he might get back. But he won’t be back for the next game I don’t think.”
Rory joins county stars Paul Griffin, Mark Davoren and Darren Magee on the absentees list while another county player, Niall Corkery, aggravated a knee injury against Portlaoise.
“We will see what the medical people say,” said Crokes boss Carr about Corkery’s potential availability against Garrycastle.
Ross believes some teams may have underestimated Crokes up to now on the basis of their massive injury list.
“Maybe people do underestimate us considering how many players we are missing,” continued the talented dual player. “It might tell at some stage but it hasn’t so far. You just get on with what you have. There is no point complaining. It doesn’t get you anywhere.”
Opponents Garrycastle are almost certain to be without wing-back Doran Harte for the game after he suffered a serious shoulder injury towards the end of their quarter-final victory over Mattock Rangers on Sunday afternoon in Mullingar.
Meanwhile Dr Crokes manager Harry O’Neill confirmed midfielder Ambrose O’Donovan will be out until the New Year but is hopeful attacker Kieran O’Leary may feature in Sunday week’s Munster Club SFC semi-final against Aherlow. O’Donovan injured his back in a car crash last week while O’Leary has been out since fracturing a leg bone during the Kerry SFC quarter-final win over West Kerry.
“Ambrose is up and about, and he was here at the game on Sunday. He has had MRI scans and there is nothing seriously injured. But when you get a serious injury like he has, then it’s going to take time. During the week he was good on Thursday, sore on Friday, good on Saturday. He is going to have ups and downs. We will be patient with him but it’s doubtful we will get him back before Christmas.
“Kieran is getting there every day. He did his first training session with us on Friday night. If he doesn’t get any setback, then he might play some part. The O’Donoghue Cup final next weekend is just a bit too soon for him. But if we need him in the Munster semi-final, I am hopeful that he might be able to play some part.”