Injury crisis for Laois hurlers ahead of Round Robin clash with Westmeath

Rory Delaney

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Rory Delaney

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rory@leinsterexpress.ie

Injury crisis for Laois hurlers ahead of Round Robin clash with Westmeath

Picky Maher is struggling with a hamstring injury.

Laois senior hurlers are facing into an injury crisis ahead of their Round Robin opener with Westmeath this Sunday afternoon.

There are currently injury doubts over seven of the panel, as manager Eamonn Kelly looks to build on the momentum of their dramatic win over Kerry a few weeks ago.

Stephen Maher, who returned from a broken finger for that Kerry game, pulled a hamstring training with Clough-Ballacolla, and is a major doubt.

Matthew Whelan has yet to regain full mobility in his dislocated thumb, and Kelly rated him as doubtful for this weekend's game.

Ryan Mullaney is definitely ruled out, after he dislocated his shoulder playing for Castletown, while John Lennon has a groin strain and is also listed as doubtful.

There is no let up in the bad news either, as both Cha Dwyer and Leigh Bergin are struggling to shake off hamstring injuries, and Podge Lawlor recently suffered a setback in his bid to return to full fitness, and remains sidelined.

It leaves Laois picking from a weakened squad for the must-win game. There was at least some good injury news for Laois, however, as Dwane Palmer is back in contention after missing the game against Kerry with a dead leg, while Ciaran Collier will also be in contention to start after making his return from a cruciate tear as a sub against Kerry.

Mark Kavanagh is nearing a return also, although the first round of the Leinster U-21 is thought to be a more likely game for him to feature in.