Carbery Rangers' Kiely to anchor Tipp defence against Rebels

Carbery Rangers' Kiely to anchor Tipp defence against Rebels
Tipperary's Robbie Kiely and Tommy Durnin of Louth. Picture: INPHO/Ryan Byrne

CARBERY Rangers' Robbie Kiely will anchor the defence for the Tipperary footballers in tomorrow's showdown with Cork.

Kiely's family moved to west Cork in recent years which saw the dynamic centre-back switch his club allegiance to the 2016 county champions, but he remains the fulcrum of the Tipp rearguard.

The Premier have been forced into one notable change to take on the Rebels in Páirc Uí Rinn, 5pm, live on RTÉ2, as keeper Evan Comerford is suspended with Ciarán Kenrick taking his place. 

Liam Kearns' charges are underdogs with the bookies against Cork in the Munster semi-final, despite stunning the Leesiders at the same stage last year, while it required late points from Aidan Walsh to see them off in the 2014 clash in Páirc Uí Chaoimh.

The incentive for Cork this time is a likely Munster final in the revamped Páirc in July against Kerry, who take on Clare this Sunday, though they'll need a vast improvement from their tepid effort in a one-point win over Waterford in the opening round.

Walsh will miss out due to a hamstring injury, while veteran Alan O'Connor is suspended following a straight red in the latter stages of the victory in Dungarvan. The Cork selectors are expected to reshape the team, with Donncha O'Connor a likely starter after hitting three points as an impact sub against the Déise.

Tipp have serious firepower up front in Conor Sweeney and former UCC Sigerson Cup winner Michael Quinlivan, while captain Brian Fox, midfielder George Hannigan and wing-back Bill Maher will be other key figures.

TIPPERARY (SFC v Cork): Ciarán Kenrick; Shane O'Connell, Paddy Codd, Alan Campbell; Bill Maher, Robbie Kiely, Jimmy Feehan; Liam Casey, George Hannigan; Josh Keane, Liam Boland, Brian Fox; Conor Sweeney, Michael Quinlivan, Liam McGrath.

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