Boost for Kerry hurling as James Logue and Patrick Kelly join panel

Kerry hurling manager Eamon Kelly has pulled off a double coup with the additions of Tipperary goalkeeper James Logue and Clare’s former All-Ireland SHC medallist Patrick Kelly for the 2015 season.

Boost for Kerry hurling as James Logue and Patrick Kelly join panel

Logue is an All-Ireland medallist in the minor, U21 and intermediate grades, and has also represented Tipperary at senior level.

Kelly, from the Clarecastle club, was a member of Davy Fitzgerald’s Liam MacCarthy Cup winning squad in 2013. Both players are expected to start against UCC in tomorrow’s Waterford Crystal Cup quarter-final at Austin Stack Park in Tralee.

Logue will aim to make the number one shirt his own for the coming season while manager Kelly has earmarked his namesake for a central defensive position, either at full or centre-back.

Eamon Kelly explained: “James picked up a back injury last weekend but we are hoping that he will be fit for the UCC game. We played Kildare in a challenge match on Monday night and Patrick did well. He’s a man, a good strong lad and hasn’t missed a training session.”

Kelly has also confirmed highly-rated forward Darragh O’Connell, a 2011 Christy Ring Cup and All-Ireland U21 B medallist, has transferred from Abbeydorney to Dublin club Cuala.

O’Connell’s switch could bring him to the attention of current Dublin senior hurling team boss Ger Cunningham.

Meanwhile, Kerry supremo Kelly is pleased with the return to full fitness of 2013 senior captain Paud Costelloe, who sustained cruciate knee ligament damage during last year’s Christy Ring Cup final defeat to Down.

Stephen Murphy, Michael O’Leary and Darragh Shanahan have also been drafted into the senior set-up.

Logue, meanwhile, revealed he still retains a “burning ambition” to establish a senior career with Tipperary in the future.

The Ballingarry clubman has seen his route to the Premier County senior squad blocked by All Star Darren Gleeson and back-up Darragh Egan.

But Logue, 26, insisted: “My burning ambition is to play senior for Tipperary at some point in the future but, for now, I am fully committed to the Kerry cause and thoroughly enjoying my experience there so far. I’m looking forward to the season ahead when, hopefully, further silverware can be achieved for Kerry.

“I’ve trained down here on a number of occasions already and the levels of professionalism are second to none.

“It’s no lesser an inter-county set up than any other and the passion for hurling down here is unbelievable.

“I feel like I’m in the form of my life and I’m really looking forward to hurling for Kerry.”

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