Was Seanie Johnston back on his old stomping ground this week?
As if there wasn’t already enough attention on Seanie Johnston ahead of this weekend, he was reportedly spotted doing some solo preparation in a familiar setting earlier this week.
Although Johnston may not be fit to play any part against his native county because of a shoulder problem and has been excluded from the Kildare starting XV for Sunday, plenty will be turning up in Breffni Park in anticipation of a cameo appearance from a man who has been the subject of the most controversial GAA transfer in many a year.
Johnston’s farcical appearance for the Coill Dubh hurlers to ensure his eligibility for the Lilywhites and the qualifier draw that pitted his old county against his new county has heaped attention on him ahead what would otherwise be a run of the mill qualifier clash and he ensured that tongues will keep on wagging before Sunday by showing up at his old club to practise his free-taking earlier this week.
According to a report in the Daily Star this morning, Johnston was spotted training alone at Terry Coyle Park, home ground of his old club Cavan Gaels, earlier this week and his appearance apparently didn’t go down too well with some of the locals.
While we acknowledge the fact that forwards and free-takers put in a lot of hours away from collective training sessions and need to fine-tune their preparation in the week of a big game, if it was Johnston spotted at his old ground, surely he could have picked a better place to practise in this week of all weeks.
Those who already had an axe to grind against Johnston will have further fuel to add to their fire, while it also ensures that he will remain the major focus of attention right up until the teams take to the field on Sunday afternoon, even if he himself might not play any part.
We thought that the Johnston saga was finally over after the Coill Dubh fiasco, surely to God that whatever happens at Breffni Park on Sunday, everyone can put it to bed once and for all afterwards.