Tipp star Kelly fit for Cork clash

Five-time All Star Eoin Kelly passed a fitness test last night to take his place in the Tipperary team for Saturday's All-Ireland SHC qualifier against Cork (Semple Stadium, throw-in 7pm).

Five-time All-Star Eoin Kelly passed a fitness test last night to take his place in the Tipperary team for Saturday's All-Ireland SHC qualifier against Cork (Semple Stadium, throw-in 7pm).

Kelly damaged his groin and had to be taken off during the first half of Tipp's qualifier win over Dublin last weekend, but the Mullinahone clubman, helped by treatment at Whites' cryotherapy clinic in Wexford, has made a quicker-than-expected recovery.

Kelly retains his place at full-forward but his club-mate Paul Curran has been ruled out with a broken jaw and Alan Byrne of Shannon Rovers comes in to take his place at left corner back.

Tipperary manager 'Babs' Keating has made two changes to the side which saw off the Dubs with Byrne and John Carroll, who is back after injury, being promoted to the starting line-up.

Ryan O'Dwyer drops out of the side to accommodate Carroll's return at right half-forward.

Keating has rejigged his attack with team captain Benny Dunne moving from midfield to centre-forward and Lar Corbett now stationed in the right corner after starting at left half-forward last time out.

Francis Devanney also moves from his wing forward berth to partner Hugh Maloney in midfield.

Tipperary and Cork, courtesy of two wins on the trot, have both qualified for the All-Ireland quarter-finals but the winner of Saturday's tie will top qualifier Group 1B and secure a last-eight date with Wexford.

This is the fourth successive year that the old Munster rivals have met in the championship.

Cork beat Tipp in the 2005 and 2006 Munster finals - winning by 1-21 to 1-16 and 2-14 to 1-14 respectively - and the Rebels also won an All-Ireland qualifier between the sides in 2004 (2-19 to 1-16).

Indeed, Tipp are seeking their first championship win over Cork since the 1991 Munster final replay.

TIPPERARY (SHC v Cork) - G Kennedy; E Buckley, D Fanning, A Byrne; E Corcoran, C O'Mahony, S Maher; H Maloney, F Devaney; J Carroll, B Dunne (capt), S Butler; L Corbett, E Kelly, W Ryan.

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