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Dublin: 1 °C Thursday 18 October, 2018
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Nicky O'Connell returns to Clare squad after apology

The Clonlara man left the squad last month.

Nicky O'Connell in action for Clare.
Nicky O'Connell in action for Clare.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

A MONTH AFTER leaving in high-profile circumstances, it is being reported this morning that Nicky O’Connell has returned to the Clare senior hurling squad after apologising to his team-mates and manager Davy Fitzgerald.

O’Connnell and Davy O’Halloran both left the squad in March after the Banner opened their league campaign with three successive losses before their ultimate relegation from Division 1A of the Allianz National Hurling League.

In a newspaper interview given by O’Halloran, he claimed the pair had walked away after being subjected to a “humiliating” disciplinary process for socialising two nights before a league game.

Five days later, the Clare squad issued a statement declaring they were a “united” group and that all parties were happy with how the furore surrounding the departure of the pair from the Banner panel was handled.

However, the Irish Independent reports this morning that O’Connell — a senior panellist since making his debut in 2010 — has now been welcomed back by the squad after apologising to the team and Davy Fitzgerald made it clear he did not object to the 25-year’s return to the fold.

Speaking on Morning Ireland, RTÉ’s Marty Morrissey confirmed the news and stated the Clonlara man would return to training this evening after approaching Fitzgerald on Friday indicating a desire to return.

However, there has been no such approach from O’Halloran, with Morrissey reporting it seems “unlikely”.

O’Connell’s return is welcome news for the Banner as they prepare for a Munster championship quarter-final with Limerick on 24 May.

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Steve O'Rourke

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