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# reaching out
How rugby's Fitzgerald and Hanrahan helped Kerry's Donaghy in injury battle
The Kingdom star got the advice of leading rugby stars when battling injures in 2014.

KIERAN DONAGHY HAS revealed that he sounded out rugby stars Luke Fitzgerald and JJ Hanrahan for advice as he sought to overcome the injury problems that have made 2014 ‘the hardest year of his career’.

Donaghy is part of the Kerry squad that travels to Croke Park for today’s All-Ireland senior football quarter-final against Galway.

The Austin Stacks club man is now fully fit after a difficult season where has battled groin and hip injures along with a dislocated shoulder.

“It’s been the hardest year of my career,” reveals Donaghy. “For part of 2013, the groin and hip both affected me. I was coming off the pitch after a county league final last December and I was dragging my leg. I knew then I was in bother with it.

“It was frustrating then this year doing the rehab work but not getting the results. I talked to Luke Fitzgerald and JJ Hanrahan, they had both had the same injury. They just said it’s a long-standing thing and gave me good advice about working on the mental aspect of it. But it was difficult when you’re an amateur GAA player and also working, so you don’t have the time to put in as much rehab.”

After missing most of the league, Donaghy then dislocated his shoulder in a club game in April. He was told that he faced a ten-week spell on the sidelines but Donaghy managed to recover in a seven-week time frame.

“If not 100%, then I’m very near it in terms of stamina and mobility. I don’t have eight or nine months of hard training done but if I go on to the pitch, I’m prepared to help this Kerry team in any way I can.”

In Donaghy’s absence, Kerry have managed to win the Munster title with young attackers James O’Donoghue and Paul Geaney both stepping up to produce terrific performances in the provincial final last month against Cork.

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“They’re both playing really good stuff. A lot of marquee forwards have gone from the Kerry squad, so it’s great to see these guys coming in. They’re very talented and doing very well. I suppose it is strange with the amount of older lads that have left the squad but that’s what happens and we’ve had to drive on.”

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