Tipperary hurling manager Michael Ryan has ruled out a return to the Premier panel for defender Cathal Barrett.
The Holycross defender, who picked up an All Star award after Tipperary’s All-Ireland win last year, was dropped from the Tipperary panel after their Munster SHC semi-final defeat by Cork earlier this summer for disciplinary reasons, and after Tipperary leaked two goals to Clare in last weekend’s All-Ireland quarter-final, speculation was rife about a recall for Barrett.
Last night Ryan said Tipperary would not be making any changes to their panel for the upcoming All-Ireland semi-final clash with Galway, however.
“Just to nail that for everyone,” said Ryan. “There’s been a lot of speculation in the media over the last 24 to 48 hours.
“What has been reported is accurate - our panel for 2017 is formed. There will be no more changes to the panel in 2017. That’s it and that’s the last I will say on that.”
Ryan reported a relatively clean bill of health for his side ahead of their semi-final on August 6th; he confirmed John McGrath and Patrick ‘Bonner’ Maher had sat out training earlier this week, but purely as a precaution.
“That’s my understanding as well now (players all fit), but it is a very fluid thing and if you talk to me tomorrow it might be a slightly different story.
“But jesting aside, Joe is the concern from the guys that lost out last week. After any championship game sore bodies and knocks picked up - look, nothing unusual in that.” The Joe is squad member Joe O’Dwyer.
“That’s one that caught us, we are watching that one,” said Ryan.
“He just hurt his elbow playing the week before and ran out of time.
“We are anxiously watching Joe’s progress obviously we are hoping but we have to just wait and see. We have a very good medical team up there, we ask them to work miracles at times and they do.
“Our turnaround time is so short, we really have to be as efficient as we possibly can. We are always trying to be as efficient as we possibly can terms of trying to manage the boys, but it’s a feature.
“Trying to get fellas not to train these days is the problem. They would do anything to play, and particularly at the business end of the year. There’s no second chance saloon, you have to get on the pitch.
“In fairness our boys are really mature about it, they report their injuries very meticulously. They are very aware of their bodies too, ‘that’s a niggle or that’s a knock.’ They are very good in fairness.” Teams with a two-week turnaround for the All-Ireland semi-final have a bad record - is that a worry for the Tipp boss?
“Now you are after worrying me! No, not really to be honest.
“I think the first issue we might have faced is we might have had a round of club, which would have been worse. We would have gone from playing that game against Clare to possibly a round of club this weekend, and then a two-week break.
“It’s just another game in the system of these guys, and you are going to pick up some knocks or injuries. We have them exclusively for this two week period, we are happy with that. We are under no illusions we are going into play one of the two form teams that are left at this point in time.
“I think that’s a fair assessment, Cork and Galway. In terms of how we feel about that two weeks; fine. You are not going to get a lot of work done, what you have you have. It’s really controlling the controllables for us now in terms of being fresh.”
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