INJURY BLOW Mayo captain Diarmuid O'Connor suffering a wrist injury at a training session last night (Tuesday). Pic: Sportsfile
Mayo captain suffers unlucky break
MAYO captain Diarmuid O’Connor looks set to miss the rest of the All-Ireland football championship series after fracturing his wrist in training last night (Tuesday).
O’Connor, who led Mayo to their first National League title in 18 years at the end of March, is understood to have suffered the injury during a squad training session at the Connacht GAA Centre of Excellence in Bekan.
The Mayo News understands that the Ballintubber clubman is expected to undergo surgery to repair the damage at some stage this week.
Mayo take on Armagh in Round 3 of the All-Ireland SFC Qualifiers in Castlebar on Saturday evening at 7pm.
O’Connor’s injury is the latest blow to James Horan’s plans to qualify for the ‘Super 8s’ with midfielder Matthew Ruane a major doubt for the rest of the campaign after breaking his collarbone during a training session earlier this month.
Horan’s midfield options are already stretched with experienced duo Tom Parsons (knee) and Seamie O’Shea (ankle) both currently trying to work their way back to full fitness, along with the aforementioned Ruane.
Parsons has been out of action for over a year while O’Shea hasn’t lined out with Mayo for four months.
The likes of Stephen Coen and Mikey Murray, who came off the bench to make his championship debut against Down last Saturday, are among the most likely replacements for next weekend’s knock-out game at MacHale Park.
Another possible replacement option, Donal Vaughan, has also missed Mayo’s last four competitive games due to injury but was due to return to training this week, according to the Mayo manager.
Horan also confirmed last week that Diarmuid O’Connor’s older brother, Cillian, was ‘very very close’ to making his competitive return.
Mayo’s all-time leading scorer hasn’t played a full competitive game for club or county in seven months after undergoing knee surgery last December.
Meanwhile, former Mayo minor captain, Cian Hanley, left the senior squad last week and is due to fly to America this week for the rest of the summer.
The former Brisbane Lions AFL player is believed to be lining out with the Galway GFC club in Boston.
Hanley, who made his senior debut in last summer’s championship defeat to Galway, hasn’t lined out with Mayo since their All-Ireland SFC Qualifier loss to Kildare last June.