Brian O'Driscoll back in the Cork football team to play Kerry in the McGrath Cup

And Conor Corbett, the captain of the 2019 All-Ireland minor winning side, makes his senior debut at left corner-forward
Brian O'Driscoll back in the Cork football team to play Kerry in the McGrath Cup

Brian O'Driscoll rises highest for Carbery against Avondhu in the county PSFC in Coachford. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

WEDNESDAY: McGrath Cup Cork v Kerry, Pairc Ui Rinn, 7pm.

BRIAN O’Driscoll’s four-and-a-half-year exile from the Cork football set-up is over after the 28-years-old Tadhg MacCarthaigh player from Caheragh was named in the team to begin the 2023 season.

He’s included at left half-forward following his recall to the panel in the wake of some terrific displays for Carbery in their march to the quarter-finals of the Bon Secours PSFC.

O’Driscoll, who played minor with Cork for two years and four at U21 level, last played in the chastening All-Ireland Qualifier defeat by Tyrone in July 2018, having debuted four years earlier.

His career was hampered by shoulder and hamstring injuries and in O’Driscoll’s own words ‘regrets at not always having prepared as well as I could have.’ Another player recalled is full-back Daniel O’Mahony (Knocknagree), who missed out last season due to moving to Dublin this time 12 months ago on a work placement, while Conor Corbett (Clyda Rovers) is named at left corner-forward on his debut.

He captained the All-Ireland minor winning side of 2019 with a starring role from centre-forward only for his promising career to be interrupted by a cruciate injury in the Munster U20 final win over Tipperary in July 2021.

Corbett returned following rehab this summer and helped Clyda reach the semi-finals of the SAFC, where they lost to Knocknagree by two points. He’s part of an inside line containing the captain Brian Hurley and Chris Og Jones from Iveleary.

Manager John Cleary and his selectors have picked a strong team with an equally impressive bench, including fit-again Killian O’Hanlon, who recovered from a very serious leg injury to lead Kilshannig to the county IAFC title against Aghabullogue.

And Ruairi Deane is back in the fold, too, after catching the eye for Carbery and Bantry Blues, who made it to the PIFC final against Kanturk.

CORK: MA Martin (Nemo Rangers); M Shanley (Clonakilty), D O’Mahony (Knocknagree), K O’Donovan (Nemo Rangers); R Maguire (Castlehaven), S Meehan (Kiskeam), M Taylor (Mallow); C O’Callaghan (Eire Og), I Maguire (St Finbarr’s); E McSweeney (Knocknagree), S Powter (Douglas), B O’Driscoll (Tadhg MacCarthaigh); C Og Jones (Iveleary), B Hurley (Castlehaven), captain, C Corbett (Clyda Rovers).

Subs: C Kelly (Eire Og), T Walsh (Kanturk), C Kiely (Ballincollig), L Fahy (do), S Merritt (Mallow), J O’Rourke (Carbery Rangers), K O’Hanlon (Kilshannig), F Herlihy (Dohenys), R Deane (Bantry Blues), M Cronin (Nemo Rangers), S Sherlock (St Finbarr’s).

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