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Limerick All-Ireland winning defender major doubt with serious knee injury

Manager John Kiely says Mike Casey must undergo scans to assess the damage.

LIMERICK ALL-IRELAND winning defender Mike Casey has emerged as a major doubt for his side heading into the championship, after picking up a serious knee injury.

mike-casey Limerick's Mike Casey [file photo]. Source: Bryan Keane/INPHO

Manager John Kiely has confirmed that the Na Piarsaigh player must undergo scans to assess his condition, but is unlikely to be available for selection ahead of their Munster SHC quarter-final against Clare on Sunday, 25 October.

“Well we are not to the end of the process yet,” he said at a virtual media briefing, “but listen, he has damaged his knee but he’s got to go to Santry for further investigative scans, but at the moment unfortunately it’s not looking great for him.”

Elaborating further on how Casey suffered the injury, Kiely continued:

“It was just a simple landing. It was probably your textbook knee injury where a player just lands and tries to turn on landing, and that was it really.

“It’s your textbook one, we’ve had one neatly each year for the last five years in the squad, and hopefully this is the one for this year only, if it turns out to be confirmed and fully investigated over the coming days. But at the minute, it looks like that is the case.

“But obviously we still have to go through the process.”

On a more positive note, Kiely also revealed that Darragh O’Donovan has returned to the squad after picking up a knee injury in action for his club Doon, which kept him out of the closing games in their run to the county final.

Elsewhere, Richie English is still working through his recovery after suffering a cruciate injury earlier this year in a league victory over Galway. Kiely reports that he is happy with English’s progress so far and expects to see him return to full fitness soon.

“Darragh O’Donovan has returned to full training,” says Kiely.

“Darragh suffered a knee injury in a club game, very similar circumstances, landing and twisting at the same time.

“He was very fortunate that it wasn’t a more serious injury at the same time it necessitated that he missed a couple of games with his club, really important games for his club, county semi-final, county final – nobody wants to miss those games.

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darragh-odonovan Darragh O'Donovan on the ball for Limerick. Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

“Darragh knew and his club knew that the injury at the time was just too serious to take any chances with and the pragmatic and right decision was taken not to participate in those games. The proof is in the pudding and he is back in full training.

“It’s just a pity he wasn’t able to play in that series of games for his club. He’s a young player.

“And I’ve no doubt that they’re a good club with a really good under-age academy feeding into their system and will make county semi-finals and finals many times over the next six, seven, eight years and I know Darragh will play a big part in those games but the right decision was taken by the club and Darragh to give himself a chance to heal fully before he went back training or playing.

“Another club man of his is Richie and Richie has made fantastic progress over the last six months under the guidance Dr James Ryan and Mark Melbourne. He’s running hard, he’s working very hard and I’ve no doubt he will put on the green jersey again over the coming months. He just has a small bit of work to do but nothing massive.”

The GAA’s decision to introduce yellow sliotars for this year’s All-Ireland SHC has triggered some critical comments in recent days.

Joe Canning voiced his opposition to the switch from the traditional white sliotars yesterday, calling it a “strange decision.”

Limerick’s 2018 All-Ireland manager agrees with the Galway star, and has questioned the logic behind changing the colour of the ball.

“I have to endorse Joe Canning’s comments yesterday,” Kiely begins.

“We all knew the reason why helmets were introduced, because people were losing eyes and teeth.

It was very clear cut. I have never heard anybody complain about the sliotar up until this point and you know it’s been introduced now and we just have to get one with it.

“Yeah, I just don’t have any real understanding as to why this decision was made. I don’t. I don’t believe there was a wide enough conversation had across the Association about it either.

“It’s a huge change to be making to change the colour of our ball that we have been using for over 120, 130 years.

“I just think it’s crazy, crazy. Listen, it is what it is. We move on.”

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