Jim Gavin confirms that Diarmuid Connolly will not be available for selection
Dublin GAA manager Jim Gavin has confirmed that forward Diarmuid Connolly will not be available for selection this summer as Dublin look to defend their All-Ireland title.
Connolly has not played for Dublin since their national league win over Mayo in February. The 30-year-old has also not played for his club St. Vincent's in football or hurling since and Gavin confirmed that he will not be available for selection this summer but that their will be a door open to him in the Dublin setup should he make a return.
"Diarmuid, over the last number of weeks, just hasn't been available for club or county activity," he told RTÉ Sport. "We respect that decision and I hope everybody else does as well. We play an amateur sport.
"The door will always be open for Diarmuid and hopefully we see him back playing Gaelic games in the not too distant future."
Gavin said that his squad were reinvigorated by a club break in April and that he thought the 'exclusive club' month of April was a brave decision by outgoing Director General Paraic Duffy, even if it was not the most effective with over half the counties in the country failing to adhere to the intercounty blackout.
"It was a great initiative by Croke Park," he added. "The players have really enjoyed the time time playing with their clubs. They were hurling and playing football back in their communities, back with the players they grew up playing with in the fields and streets of Dublin.
"They're fresh, they're reinvigorated and again their desire to represent Dublin as best they can always amazes me.
"From a Dublin perspective it certainly has worked. There are obviously are some challenges for the teams out early in May but I think it was a brave decision by (former director general) Páraic Duffy.
"I thought he showed strong leadership on it. I think we need more of that from Croke Park to get a handle on the fixture list."