Tony Kelly: Clare can’t afford to be without top players like Colm Galvin

Clare hurling star Tony Kelly has admitted that the county can’t afford to be without top players like Colm Galvin, writes Paul Keane.

Galvin, an All-Ireland winner and All-Star in 2013, hasn’t played for Clare this year and joint boss Donal Moloney was non-commital after yesterday’s Allianz league defeat to Tipperary regarding the player’s situation.

Colm Galvin, pictured last year.

"Our panel is open at this time and it will continue to be so," said Moloney. "We have players coming and going all of the time and that’s the way it is."

Gerry O’Connor, the other part of the joint management team, stated ahead of the Tipp game that ’Colm isn’t part of the selection process at the moment’ though didn’t explain exactly why.

Galvin’s brother, Ian, scored three points as a sub against Tipp and Kelly said it would be nice if both of the siblings were involved.

"From talking to (Colm), he said he was going back focusing on college, he’s in his final year, get that done and get out the door of college and I think he was quoted as saying that he’s meeting the two boys so I presume after he talks to the two lads (there’ll be an outcome)," said Kelly at an AIB All-Ireland club promotion. "I don’t know what their call will be on it.

"Look, a county like Clare, we want all our best players on the panel and he’s certainly one of those. You seen yesterday, his brother, Ian, they’re the kind of lads you need to progress Clare. We’re not in the luxury of say, comparing to the Dublin footballers, well no-one is on the scale they are at with the talent they’re pulling through, but in Clare we need all our best hurlers playing. I suppose we’d be hopeful he’d be on the panel."

Tony Kelly.

Clare will definitely be without Conor Ryan, another star of the 2013 win, after being advised by medics to take the year out due to illness.

"Ryano is a loss definitely but the lads have managed to keep him around, he’s getting involved in the backroom and he’s there because his on-field leadership is brilliant but what he does off the field carries even more weight," said Kelly.

"He’s brilliant in around the panel even though he hasn’t played much the last 12 months. His positivity around the whole group is huge, you’d never even think he was struggling with injury. We saw how good he was in 2013 from the quarter-final stage onwards, he’s been a physical presence either at midfield or in the half-back line so he’s definitely a loss. It’s another option you can’t call upon but at least he is going to be there for the foreseeable future in the background."

KEYWORDS: sport, gaa, hurling.


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