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‘Chunky’ Hayes: send Canning to full-forward

Kevin ‘Chunky’ Hayes would like to see Joe Canning feature at full-forward for Galway’s clash with Limerick in the All-Ireland SHC semi-final

BY GERARD BROWNE
Kevin ‘Chunky’ Hayes would like to see Joe Canning feature at full-forward for Galway’s clash with Limerick in the All-Ireland SHC semi-final on Sunday.

Speaking to David Connors and Patrick Earley on ‘Tribe Talk – Galway Hurling Podcast’, the Portumna man insists that his fellow clubmate should be stationed closer to goal “after one of the water breaks and see how it works out”.

Canning has lined out in the half-forward line for the westerners in their previous three matches.

The Tribesmen are back in the last four for the first since 2018, after seeing off Tipperary 3-23 to 2-24 in the quarter-finals.

Standing in their way of a place in hurling’s showpiece event are John Kiely’s men, who enter this game as the back-to-back Munster champions after defeating Waterford 0-25 to 0-21 in the provincial decider.

Hayes, who lined out in the maroon and white from 2005-2010, also wants to see 2017 All-Ireland winning captain David Burke start at Croke Park.

The St Thomas’ player was introduced as a substitute against Wexford and Kilkenny, before being taken off at half-time in their victory over the Premier last weekend after operating as a sweeper.

“I wouldn’t have an issue moving Conor Whelan or Brian Concannon to the half-forward line and putting Canning inside,” says the four-time All-Ireland club winner.

“He is going to cause consternation and panic, especially with Limerick’s inexperience in that area of the pitch.

“As for David, I would start him, he is too much of a big-day player and you can never write him off.

“I’d play him in a deep-lying wing-forward role or as a third midfielder, but not as a sweeper.”

Shane O’Neill’s sides are in action for the third consecutive weekend, while the Treaty will be fresh after a two-week break since their last outing.

The ex-forward doesn’t see this having an impact on the outcome of Sunday’s contest.

“I don’t think it was the most physical encounter the last day and it was a game we needed,” states Hayes.

“These are athlete players and they’re trained to cope with this schedule.”

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