Proactive Hunt in no mood to be sidelined before big kick-off

Stephen Hunt can be as combative in interviews as he is on the pitch and the Wolves winger was in spikey form yesterday as he made it clear he is not prepared to be Ireland’s invisible man in Poland.

One interviewer drew an icy stare and a withering put-down simply because he suggested Glenn Whelan’s recent wedding was a last chance of a “blow off” for Hunt and the other Irish players in attendance prior to the business at hand.

“Blow off?” said Hunt with a mixture of distaste and disbelief.

There have been times, it must be said, when he has managed to bite his lip but he couldn’t contain himself at Gannon Park in Malahide yesterday when the subject turned to James McClean and the ramifications for places on the wing.

“Luckily enough, my brain is not media trained,” he said when asked about the hype surrounding the Sunderland youngster.

“If it was then I would probably be sitting at home slippers on and relaxing so I am here now and looking to do well. I am excited to be here and the competition is healthy and I am looking forward to it.”

Hunt’s career has been blighted by injuries in recent seasons and he admitted that he feared for his participation at the European Championships because of the groin problem which restricted his campaign with Wolves.


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