CORK camogie boss Paudie Murray is sweating on the availability of team skipper Amy O’Connor for the championship.
Worryingly for Murray, O’Connor sustained a serious head injury in a recent club game, leading to serious doubts about her participation in the the group games against Offaly, Wexford and Galway from mid October.
“Unfortunately, Amy was seriously concussed and she had to stretchered off the pitch,” explained Murray on injured sustained by O'Connor on duty for St Vincent’s against Tracton.
“She was then brought by ambulance to hospital and because of the extent of her injury, there has to be some doubt about whether she will have recovered sufficiently to play in the championship games.
“Amy is a very key player for us, as she has been playing with Cork for the last six years, she has been team captain for most of that time, and has won four All-Ireland medals."
Adding to Murray’s worries is that Laura Treacy, a four-time All-Ireland winner, who sustained a hand injury in a recent club tie.
“Laura was playing for Killeagh against Ballygarvan, and she has to see a consultant before we will find out about how she is fixed for the championship games.”
Last Tuesday, the Cork team commenced their preparations for the Offaly tie on October 17-18 with a challenge against Tipperary at New Inn.
“I think we won the game by a point or two, but because of the club championship still going on in the two counties, both teams were short a number of regular players.
“However, despite the weakened teams, it was still great for us to get back together again.
"In fact, it was like a new season starting all over again, as it was our first game since we played Kilkenny in the league back in March.
“And after the game against Tipp, we had our first training session last Thursday night."
One familiar face missing was long-serving goalkeeper Aoife Murray, a sister of the team-manager, who this year announced her retirement from inter-county action.
An ever-present between the Cork posts since making her inter-county debut back in 2002, Murray collected the whopping total of nine All-Ireland senior medals and seven All-Star awards during the course of her illustrious career.
“I think that it’s a testament to Amy’s commitment to the Cork camogie team that, despite the fact she was living in Dublin for 15 of the last 18 years, she never requested a penny in expenses for regularly travelling home for training sessions at the weekend,” remarked the team boss on the Cloughduv club player whose side lost to Sars in the second round of the Cork championship.