SIDELINE Ryan O’Donoghue
ALL STAR forward Ryan O’Donoghue’s spell on the sidelines looks set to continue for a little longer. The Mayo attacker is expected to miss Belmullet’s second round Mayo SFC clash with Breaffy next Saturday evening.
O’Donoghue, who hasn’t played competitively for five months, is understood to be recovering from a groin injury.
He last lined out for Mayo against Galway in the Connacht SFC on April 24 last.
The 24 year-old, who was named as number 32 in the match programme for last Sunday’s dramatic first round win over Balla, hasn’t featured for Belmullet yet this season.
He was on the sideline at the weekend, encouraging his team-mates.
The Mayo News understands that there are hopes O’Donoghue will resume full training with his club-mates in the coming weeks.
Last year’s beaten county finalists will play Claremorris at a neutral venue in the third round on the weekend of September 24/25.
The hat-trick hero
MEANWHILE, in O’Donoghue’s absence, Ronan Murray stole the headlines for Belmullet against Balla with a hat-trick of goals and three points in their thrilling 3-8 to 2-10 victory, writes Oisin McGovern.
Murray (30) spent fifteen years in exile plying his trade as a professional soccer player, but was like a man that never went away last weekend.
The former Ispwish Town striker reflected modestly on his performance when speaking to The Mayo News after the game.
“I’ve loved this year. It’s been good to be around Belmullet people and young lads coming through,” Murray, who turns 31 next week, admitted.
“Me and Eamon [McAndrew] are probably the old stock in the squad. We’re hoping to help them get better. As you can see, last year they’d an unbelievable year.
“Hopefully we can do something similar this year, but it’s just one step at a time.”
Missing the action
A NUMBER of other members of last season’s Mayo senior squad also sat out their clubs’ opening round championship matches last weekend.
Brendan Harrison, who sustained a cruciate ligament injury last March, was among Aghamore’s backroom team for their defeat to Knockmore.
Tommy Conroy’s rehabilitation from a cruciate injury also continues and he missed The Neale’s heavy defeat to Westport. He was on the sideline with his team-mates in Cong.
Bryan Walsh, who has been dogged by a number of injuries this year, missed Ballintubber’s win over Mayo Gaels with a hamstring issue; while his team-mate Michael Plunkett remains sidelined as he recovers from an ankle injury.
Enda Hession also missed Garrymore’s victory over Davitts with a facial injury while Jordan Flynn was suspended for Crossmolina’s Intermediate championship loss to Louisburgh.
Elsewhere, Paddy Durcan was forced off during the course of Castlebar Mitchels’ narrow win over Charlestown with an ankle injury and faces a race against time to be fit for next Sunday’s trip to Ballindine to face Davitts.
The Mayo News understands that Paddy’s twin brother, James, will be out of action for the rest of the season after sustaining a cruciate ligament injury during Mitchels’ recent Mayo Senior League Final win over Knockmore.