Hoyne axed as Cody makes changes to squad
December 08, 2005
John Hoyne's inter-county career appears to be at an end after he was left out of the new Kilkenny hurling squad announced by manager Brian Cody.
DJ Carey and last season's captain Peter Barry are the other high-profile absentees from the 34-man panel, but both are expected to return in the New Year. Carey is currently in Cuba on a fundraising walk in aid of the Irish Heart Foundation, while Barry has been excused until James Stephens' involvement in the All-Ireland club championship ends. They play Portumna in the semi-final on February 12.
Hoyne's omission will surprise many, especially as he had been a regular member of the attack in recent years and was a key figure in the All-Ireland successes of 2000, 2002 and 2003. The other players to be dropped from last year's squad are Mark Phelan (Glenmore), John Maher (St. Martin's), Ken Coogan (Tullaroan) and Clara's Conor Phelan, who has been forced to retire because of a heart ailment.
Better news is the return of Noel Hickey, who missed the latter stages of this year's championship because of a viral infection.
The new faces in the squad include the manager's son Donnacha Cody (James Stephens), Austin Murphy (Clara), Peter Cleere (Black and Whites), Sean Cummins (Rower-Inistioge), John Dalton (Carrickshock), PJ Delaney (Fenians), Michael Fennelly (Shamrocks), Richard O'Neill (Kilmacow), Sean O'Neill (Dunnamaggin) and Eoin Reid (Shamrocks).
Many of the new faces are expected to be on show when Kilkenny play TG4's Underdogs in a challenge match on Sunday week at Nowlan Park.
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