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Dublin: 3°C Sunday 28 February 2021

'The workload on players in these months is absolutely appalling' - Corofin defender's fixture clash

Kieran Molloy has had to choose an All-Ireland club semi-final over the Sigerson Cup final.

NUIG manager Maurice Sheridan and player Kieran Molloy.
NUIG manager Maurice Sheridan and player Kieran Molloy.
Image: INPHO

NUI GALWAY MANAGER Maurice Sheridan said that it is regrettable that Corofin player Kieran Molloy has had to choose between playing in a Sigerson Cup final or the All-Ireland club football semi-final tomorrow.

Molloy, a key figure for both NUIG and Corofin, will miss the Sigerson Cup final against UCD as he will playing in the All-Ireland club football semi-final.

That match against Kildare champions Moorefield will go ahead in Tullamore at 2pm, with the Sigerson Cup final taking place in Santry at 3.30pm.

“It is a terrible situation for Kieran, for Corofin and for us, but the workload on players in these months is absolutely appalling,” said former Mayo footballer Sheridan.

He paid tribute to the Corofin club and to Molloy himself for juggling the demands as best as possible.

“He’s an absolute hero. He wanted to play (in the semi-final) and the Corofin club have been very accommodating towards us. But he won’t be available on Saturday.

“It’s a very difficult position for any player but it’s obvious he is going to go with his club. The Corofin club have been absolutely reasonable with us.

“It’s not Kieran’s fault or Corofin’s or us that this has arisen,” added Sheridan.

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Molloy was kept in reserve in Wednesday night’s 2-12 to 0-15 semi-final win over DIT in dreadful wintery conditions in Mullingar, coming on as a substitute in the second half and kicking a point.

His Corofin club-mate Liam Silke also came on for UCD in their semi-final victory and raised a white flag.

NUIG will now meet UCD in the final tomorrow as they look for their first title since 2003. UCD are the most prolific winners with 33 titles, NUIG are next with 22 but they haven’t met in the final since they clashed for four years running to 1980.

The players may have only a few days to recover from their semi-final exploits — UCD went to two periods of extra-time before seeing off Ulster University on Wednesday — but Sheridan, a winner with NUIG in 1992, is all too familiar with the demands of the competition in its traditional format.

“We used to have to play on a Friday as well as on a Saturday and on a Sunday. I did that once. In this competition the conditions are tough but it’s all about resolve and a collective attitude really.

“The opposition are tough. UCD are always there or thereabouts so it will be a good final on Saturday,” added Sheridan.

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John Fallon

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