Cusack left out of Cork panel for NHL


The curtain may have come down on the inter-county career of veteran Cork hurling goalkeeper Dónal Óg Cusack. County manager Jimmy Barry-Murphy confirmed that the three-time All-Ireland winner has been left out of the county’s panel for the upcoming Allianz Hurling League.

Speaking to Finbarr McCarthy on local radio station 96 FM, Barry-Murphy said that current All Star Anthony Nash and Darren McCarthy would be the goalkeepers for the campaign, which begins in two weeks in Páirc Uí Rinn against Tipperary.

The manager spoke to Cusack last Tuesday and informed him of the decision but he added in yesterday’s radio interview that the composition of the panel would be reviewed on an ongoing basis.

Cusack, 35, is currently in New York with a group of volunteers from the GPA helping to rebuild facilities in Breezy Point, which was devastated by last year’s super storm Sandy. His last match for Cork was the league semi-final against Tipperary 10 months ago in which he sustained a serious Achilles tendon injury.

The Ulster Council have reported no medical issues with the association’s new sideline restrictions, which attracted the publicly-stated concerns of two county team doctors this week.

These comments came in the wake of last weekend’s decision by Central Council to proceed with new limits on the numbers allowed on the edge of the pitch.

But it has emerged one of the principal influences on the vote in favour of the reduction in sideline numbers from 12 to five in spite of concerns about access for medical personnel being raised, was the trial conducted in Ulster during last month’s McKenna Cup.

“It would have been our general experience the new regulations worked satisfactorily,” according to Danny Murphy, chief executive officer of the Ulster Council. “We introduced them in order to give teams an idea of how they would operate during the league. We didn’t enforce the full rigour of the rules by imposing sanctions but counties complied and in general it worked. Whenever doctors needed access to the field they got it without question and the regulations were implemented without any fuss.”

Under the new regulations just one medic, a physiotherapist or doctor, is allowed on the sideline with the other in the substitutes’ enclosure, which is located within a couple of steps of the playing area.

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