Mayo manager James Horan has been dealt a hammer blow after two-time Young Footballer of the Year Cillian O’Connor dislocated his shoulder in club championship action on Saturday night.
O’Connor is to be assessed this week to see if he will require surgery which could rule him out for the entire championship. Even if surgery is not required, he will miss Mayo’s next championship game, against Roscommon in three weeks’ time.
O’Connor picked up the injury playing for his club Ballintubber against Claremorris in the Mayo SFC in Clogher. It’s the same injury he picked up a week after last year’s All-Ireland final, putting put him out of action until March.
“He was having a great game and he was playing brilliantly since he came back from injury. It’s a nightmare for him,” said former Galway and Sligo boss and current Ballintubber manager Peter Ford.
O’Connor scored 1-4 from full-forward in the game. Ballintubber went on to win 3-11 to 1-12 with Daire Summerville and Gary Loftus getting the other goals for the 2010 and 2011 champions. In the other game in Group 2 Brendan Murray hit 1-2 to help Ballina Stephenites to a 1-13 to 1-7 win over Shrule/Glencorrib.
Elsewhere defending Mayo SFC champions Ballaghaderreen were held to a draw away to Aghamore, 2-7 to 0-13. Conor Byrne and county forward Alan Freeman grabbed the goals for underdogs Aghamore. Barry Regan equaliser salvaged a draw for Ballagh.
Mayo senior captain Andy Moran was a second half sub for Ballagh, scoring one 45 as his continues his rehabilitation. James Kilcullen played midfield for Ballagh before flying out to London to play with Sligo in yesterday’s Connacht SFC defeat.
In the other game in Group 4 Mayo defender Donal Vaughan was sent off for two yellow cards as his club Ballinrobe lost by a point to Garrymore, 0-11 to 1-7.
In Group 3 an Enda Casey winning point saw last year’s Intermediate champions Charlestown defeat Westport 1-9 to 0-11.
In the other Group 3 game Knockmore beat Tourmakeady 0-11 to 0-8. Mayo forward Kevin McLoughlin scored four points for the winners, all from frees. Kevin Dolan was the top scorer for the losers with 0-5.
County defender Richie Feeney was the star for Castlebar Mitchels with 0-4 from play as they overcame Davitts, missing injured Mayo forward Michael Conroy. The final score in Ballindine was 1-10 to 0-5 in favour of the Mitchels.
In the other Group 1 game Mayo midfielder Aidan O’Shea starred at midfield, kicking three points from play as his club Breaffy overcame Crossmolina 2-15 to 2-5. Breaffy’s Alan Durcan top-scored with 1-4.
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