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Dublin: 13 °C Saturday 23 February, 2019

Tipperary All-Ireland winner preparing for 6-month Army peace-keeping role in Syria

‘Bonner’ Maher and Waterford’s Gráinne Kenneally are off to the Golan Heights for six months.

Image: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

TIPPERARY WILL HAVE to plan without forward bulwark Patrick ‘Bonner’ Maher for the vast majority of the 2017 Allianz Hurling League campaign.

The Lorrha-Dorrha colossus is currently preparing for an Army peacekeeping mission to the Golan Heights, an area visited by Kilkenny star Eoin Larkin this year.

130 personnel will travel as part of the 54th Infantry Group next month and will spend six months there.

Maher isn’t the only GAA star making the trip as Waterford ladies footballer Gráinne Kenneally is also one of the Army officers being put through their paces at the Glen of Imaal in preparation for the mission.

Maher told RTÉ: “It was a great experience winning the All-Ireland but you have to go back to your job at the end of the day.

“Every Monday, after every Sunday, every person playing GAA goes back to their job.

“This is my job that I enjoy doing.”

And Kenneally said: “Obviously we’re going to an area that requires our support and help.

“That is there in the background but we do train for this, we’re very well-trained and very well prepared.”

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