Canty injury mars Cork build-up

Cork manager Conor Counihan has made three changes to his team for Sunday's Munster SFC final against Kerry (Pairc Ui Chaoimh, throw-in 2pm), but full-back Graham Canty could be a late withdrawal for the game.

Cork manager Conor Counihan has made three changes to his team for Sunday's Munster SFC final against Kerry (Pairc Ui Chaoimh, throw-in 2pm), but full-back Graham Canty could be a late withdrawal for the game.

Canty, who scored a vital late goal in the recent win over Limerick, is rated doubtful for the Kerry clash after he damaged his A/C shoulder joint in a training match last night.

A decision on the Cork skipper's availability is not expected to be made until the morning of the Munster final. For the moment, Canty is pencilled in at full-back.

Explaining how the injury happened, Cork team doctor Con Murphy said: "It was at training during an A v B game and Graham got a shoulder.

"It's too early to say how bad the damage is, but it's something we could do without and we hate to see fellas injured leading up to a big game."

Murphy revealed that the injury occurred towards the end of the training session and Canty will have intensive treatment from physio Colin Lane in the lead-up to the final.

Two of Counihan's changes are injury-enforced with Noel O'Leary (A/C joint) and Paudie Kissane (broken arm) both currently sidelined.

The duo's places in the Rebels' defence have gone to Kieran O'Connor and Anthony Lynch, while former captain Derek Kavanagh had earned a recall, coming in at midfield as an indirect replacement for Fintan Goold.

Regular centre-fielder Nicholas Murphy has been moved to right half-forward, meaning Cork will line out with Kavanagh and Alan O'Connor at centre-field.

However, should Canty fail to recover in time, Kavanagh is expected to be moved to the full-back position.

The Cork team selection again excludes James Masters, one of the country's leading scorers in recent championship campaigns. It is the second straight championship match the Nemo star has failed to start.

With Masters still benched, the Cork full-forward trio of Daniel Goulding, Donnacha O'Connor and John Hayes is the only line that the management have not tinkered with from the semi-final.

Sunday's Munster decider will be the 14th championship meeting between old rivals Cork and Kerry since 2000.

Kerry, the defending Munster and All-Ireland champions, have won the Munster title on no fewer than 71 occasions between 1892 and 2005. Cork have won the title 34 times.

CORK (SFC v Kerry) - A Quirke; D Duggan, G Canty (capt), K O'Connor; B O'Regan, G Spillane, A Lynch; A O'Connor, D Kavanagh; N Murphy, P O'Neill, S O'Brien; D Goulding, D O'Connor, J Hayes.

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