Ciarán Kilkenny hasn’t given up on hurling

Dublin dual talent hopes to be able to play both codes in the future and confirms his fitness for championship opener

Ciaran Kilkenny: “I’d like to keep the hurling up . . . I have a great passion for it.”

Ciaran Kilkenny: “I’d like to keep the hurling up . . . I have a great passion for it.”


Ciarán Kilkenny has left open his future as a dual player. The young Dublin player, committed to the footballers this year, re-affirmed his love of hurling and says that he would be interested in lining out for the county senior hurlers in the years ahead.

Kilkenny is one of a rich crop of dual talent that has emerged in recent years, as Dublin reached All-Ireland minor finals in both codes in successive years.

Although he signed up with AFL club Hawthorn last year, he returned from Australia at Christmas and pledged his future to Gaelic games but committed exclusively to football for this year.

“I’m going to under-21 hurling training tonight and I’d like to keep the hurling up because I have a great passion for it. I’m going to college next year and I’ll have a bit of down-time and that could be an opportunity to play a bit of hurling and football.

“Next year that’d be something I’d be kind of interested in doing (for Dublin), to give it a go because I’ll have so much time off college and it’ll be a great opportunity to give it a go.”

Aware of plans
Asked was Dublin football manager Jim Gavin aware of his plans, he said: “I’ve always said to Jim that I’ve a love of hurling and football and I’ve kind of said this year I’d give my priorities to the footballers because I’m just back from Australia and involved in a new job, that I’d concentrate on that and play a bit of hurling with the club and under-21s so that’s my priority for this year but I’m not ruling out in future that I’d could play dual.”

Kilkenny made an immediate impact on the senior footballers last year, selected by then manager Pat Gilroy to start the All-Ireland semi-final against Mayo and scoring three points from play.

Medial ligament injury curtailed his league appearances this spring but he confirmed yesterday that he is now fit and in contention for the county’s first outing in the Leinster championship tomorrow week.

Feeling fresh
“I’m feeling fresh now. I got to play games for the club over the last few weeks. I’m feeling fresh and good now.

“In hindsight it was probably good to get the break because I’ve been so much on the go over the last few years between club, county, school and Australia as well.

“I was out for five to six weeks. It was an impact injury I suffered against Tyrone. I clashed and it was self-explanatory, I did the rehab and was back.

“It was a nice injury to get as I’ve a sister who did two of her cruciate ligaments. I couldn’t really sleep that night (waiting for diagnosis) so I was lucky I didn’t get the cruciate.

“Touch wood I won’t get that in future. In hindsight it’s probably good for me as I personally feel fresh.”