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McGrath set to feature against Galway and Tipp's 'Dyson Hoover' winning fitness race

Noel McGrath is on the comeback trail and Pádraic Maher should be fit for All-Ireland hurling semi-final against Galway.

Noel McGrath is on course to feature in Tipperary's All-Ireland hurling semi-final against Galway.
Noel McGrath is on course to feature in Tipperary's All-Ireland hurling semi-final against Galway.
Image: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

NOEL MCGRATH IS on course to feature in Tipperary’s All-Ireland senior hurling semi-final against Galway on Sunday week, 16 August.

The 24-year-old forward underwent surgery on testicular cancer in April and has made significant progress in his recovery since then.

The Loughmore-Castleiney player has lined out for his club recently and is back in full training with the Tipp squad.

And manager Eamon O’Shea stated last night that the 2010 All-Ireland senior medallist is “in the mix” for a place in the team to face the Tribesmen at GAA HQ.

It’s more likely that McGrath will figure from the bench at some stage in proceedings but O’Shea acknowledged that McGrath’s return from illness is a significant boost to the Premier County.

He confirmed: “Noel is progressing well. It’s a serious thing so you just have to wait and see how he goes and what happens.

Eamon O'Shea celebrates at the final whistle Eamon O'Shea has delivered a positive report on Noel McGrath. Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

“He’s been hurling away with us and he has played for his club a couple of times.

“It’s great credit to him in terms of it’s good to get back doing things he likes doing, like any of us.

“I think that’s been the big thing for us, we haven’t been thinking really about the game or competitively or whatever, it may turn out like that hopefully but the big thing was to get him back in an environment where he’s happy. That was the main thing for us. He’s in the mix.”

Defensive bulwark Pádraic Maher, labelled the ‘Dyson Hoover’ by teammate Kieran Bergin, is also on course to be fit in time to face the Westerners.

Maher, 26, damaged the AC joint in his shoulder during the early minutes of the Munster final victory over Waterford but played on for the remainder of the game.

Padraic Maher Tipperary's 'Dyson Hoover', Pádraic Maher, is winning his fitness race. Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

The Thurles Sarsfields clubman left Semple Stadium with his arm in a sling but O’Shea is “hopeful” that his centre back will be fully recovered.

He said: “Pádraic Maher has been injured but we are hopeful he will be okay.

“We’ve had ongoing little minor issues with Michael Cahill and Paddy Stapleton, just little bits and pieces here and there but we’re hopeful that by the middle of next week everybody should be okay.”

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