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Mixed news for Cork as O'Neill may feature in Munster final but Powter suffers setback

There’s both good and bad news from the treatment table for the Cork senior footballers.

pjimage (3) Sean Powter and Colm O'Neill.

COLM O’NEILL MAY yet feature for Cork in the Munster SFC final against Kerry on Saturday week, but the Rebels will almost certainly be without Seán Powter, who has had an injury setback.

Attacker O’Neill was forced off in Cork’s semi-final win over Tipperary and, while there were fears he had suffered a third cruciate ligament injury, damaged cartilage was the diagnosis.

Cork coach Ronan McCarthy admits that O’Neill faces a race against time to be fit but isn’t ruling him out.

“Colm had the op on the Wednesday after the Tipp game,” he said, “so, even though it’s regarded as a minor procedure, it is an invasive procedure but he’s back running.

“He’s making every effort to get back. It’ll be three and half weeks from the op to the game, which is very tight. We’ll give him every opportunity and he’s made an incredible effort already, a real determination for him to get back. It’ll be tight but we’ll give him the chance.”

The news isn’t as good for last year’s young player of the year nominee Powter, who hasn’t featured since having to come off in Cork’s league clash with Tipp on January 27, having suffered a hamstring tear.

“He had a bit of a setback last week,” McCarthy said, “We played Roscommon.

“Nothing as serious as previously but it just breaks his run of training so he’d been back full training, he played in that match. That’s one that we’ll just have to monitor but he’ll be tight, he’ll be tight to make the game. Again, we’ll give him a chance.”

Brian O’Driscoll, another hamstring victim, is likely to be available for selection but Donncha O’Connor – also hamstring – is likely to miss out.

“Donncha’s in the same boat again,” McCarthy said, “he’s got a niggling hamstring coming back and getting little pulls and so on but nothing major.

“It’s broken the cycle of training so, again, he’s trying to make it but what you do there is you assume they’re not going to make it and if they do it’s a bonus.”

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Denis Hurley

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