County PRO Terry Cormican said: “in such circumstances it is very difficult for the selectors to pick a team and while we will field, how strong the team will be depends entirely on who is available.” Champions Kilkenny include seven of last year’s team.
Included in that septet are John Tennyson, Eoin Larkin and Richie Power, who played with the senior team last Sunday. Ciaran Hoyne, Michael Rice, James Fitzpatrick and Willie O’Dwyer are also senior panel members and were on last year’s winning team.
Galway include four seniors on their U 21 team for Saturday’s All-Ireland semi-final against Cork in Limerick (3.30). David Collins and Niall Healy both played starring roles in the superb victory over Kilkenny in the senior semi-final while Ger Mahon and Aengus Callinan were substitutes.
Last year’s beaten finalists will also include six members of the intermediate team which defeated Cork in the semi-final - Paul Flynn, Alan Garvey, Brendan Lucas, Joe Gantley, Enna Ryan and Kenneth Burke.
Cork have made two changes from the side that defeated Tipperary in the Munster final.
Eoin Cadogan, who came on as a second-half substitute, holds his place at midfield, with PJ Copse dropping to the bench.
Kevin Canty, who was also introduced in the Munster final, holds his place at right half-forward in place of Ronan Conway, who broke his hand in that game.
Meanwhile, three times All-Ireland Club champions Athenry will have to do without their manager Billy Caulfiield for the defence of their Galway crown after his six months suspension was upheld by the Disputes Resolution Authority (DRA).
Caulfied was banned for six months by the Galway County Board following an incident at an intermediate hurling match in June. This was subsequently upheld by the Connacht Council, but was appealed to the new DRA.
: A. Nash (Kanturk); P. Fitzgerald (Erins Own), D. McSweeney (Blarney), E. O’Sullivan (Ballyhea); S. O’Neill (Bishopstown), K. Hartnett (Russell Rovers), S. Cronin (St. Marys/UCC); B. Barry (Killeagh), E. Cadogan (Douglas); K. Canty (Valley Rovers), M. Naughton (Cloyne), S. O’Sullivan (Na Piarsaigh); M. O’Sullivan (Ballyhea), M. Cussen (Sarsfields), D. Dorris (Glen Rvs.).
. S. Bowen (Erins Own), D. Cunningham (Glen Rvs.), A. Ryan (Midleton), PJ Copse (Charleville), B. Coleman (Ballyhea), D. Cronin (Glen Rvs.), S. Dineen (Ballinhassig), G. O’Leary (Fr. O’Neills), C. Ó Conchuir (Ballygarvan).
: A. Ryan (Craughwell); P. Flynn (Tommie Larkins), A. Gaynor (Mullagh), K. Briscoe (do.); G. Mahon (Kinvara), B. Cullinane (Turloughmore), A. Garvey (Tommie Larkins); B. Lucas (Meelick-Eyecourt), D. Collins (Liam Mellows); J. Gantley (Beagh), A. Callinan (Liam Mellows), E. Ryan (Killimordaly); K. Burke (St. Tomas), N. Healy (Craughwell), K. Wade (Sarsfields).
: D. Fogarty (Erins Own); D. Cody (James Stephens), J. Tennyson (Carrickshock), S. Maher (Tulloran); J. Dalton (Carrickshock), PJ Delaney (Fenians), C. Hoyne (Graigue/Ballycallen); M. Rice (Carrickshock), M. Fennelly (Ballyhale/Shamrocks); J. Fitzpatrick (do.), A. Murphy (Clara), E. Larkin (J. Stephens); E. Reid (Ballyhale/Shamrocks), R. Power Carrickshock), W. O’Dwyer (Mullinavat).