DOWN have suffered a huge blow in the lead up to next week’s Ulster Championshtip clash with Antrim as Darragh O’Hanlon has been ruled out.
Gaelic Life understands that the Kilcoo man, Down’s Player of the Year and an Irish News Ulster All-Star last season, will miss the match due to a back issue – and there are fears that his season could be over altogether.
It’s a big blow for Mourne boss Eamonn Burns, although he had used O’Hanlon less as the season progressed. His three starts all came in the first four games of their Division Two campaign although he still contributed 0-10 from deadball situations.
O’Hanlon’s response was a series of stunning performances for his club during April and it was expected that he would be given his chance to rekindle his partnership with Caolan Mooney that worked so well last year with O’Hanlon picking up Man of the Match awards against Armagh and Monaghan.
The pair broke forward brilliantly from half-back as Down reached the Ulster final, but they may not get the chance to play together this year.