CASTLEHAVEN will give Michael Hurley every chance to prove his fitness ahead of Saturday night’s Cork senior football semi-final replay.
This will be the third instalment of the Castlehaven v Duhallow saga following their draws in the semi-final and replay, and Haven’s hopes could hinge on Hurley’s fitness. The Cork senior scored 1-6 from play in last weekend’s 1-18 to 2-15 draw but he is struggling with a knee injury picked up in the early stages of the contest.
‘Michael is the main concern,’ manager Liam Collins admits.
‘He hurt his knee at the start of the game. It swelled up and has a bit of fluid in it. He’s getting physio, going to the pool, he’s trying everything to get himself right.
‘He was excellent for us last weekend. He did the majority of our scoring too and all from play, so to be without him would be a major loss.’
Castlehaven could also be without David McCarthy, who came on as a half-time sub last weekend. McCarthy plays club rugby with Garryowen and they have an AIL Division 1A game against Clontarf in Dublin at 2.30pm on Saturday. Haven’s replay against Duhallow throws in at 7.45pm, so McCarthy will be in a race against time to reach Páirc Uí Rinn, not to mention having played a rugby game a few hours before the replay.
‘Last week’s game was originally on Saturday night and they made a dispensation for Duhallow and we accepted it,’ Collins says.
‘We wanted this replay on Sunday but there was no dispensation for us. It’s a bit of unfair really because we wanted to go this Sunday.
‘It’s not looking likely that Dave will be available now, his game is on Saturday afternoon but it’s not looking good that he’ll be able to get down to us in time.’
In better news, Chris Hayes is back in the reckoning after sitting out last weekend’s draw through suspension after receiving a red card in the first draw.
Collins was pleased that Haven’s performance last weekend was an improvement on the first draw.
‘We played better than the first day but we still made mistakes and they cost us,’ he says.
‘We went for goals when we had point opportunities. Points are very important in games like this when you’ll probably have only one point between the teams at the end.We need to be at our best, but if we play as well as last Sunday, we have every chance.’