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Published: 09:11 | 27/4/16

Canning plays down injury fears

Joe Canning is confident he will be fit for Galway's Leinster SHC opener on June 5.

Canning missed Portumna’s 2-13 to 0-16 defeat of Craughwell at the weekend because of a knee injury, but the three-time All-Star expects to return at the weekend.

"It’s just a small cartilage issue in my knee. I am hoping to be back this weekend. I went for a bit of a jog so if I don’t feel any ill-effects throughout the rest of the week I should be okay," Canning said.

"It’s only just the wear and tear more so than anything. We will have a lot of club action over the next few weeks so hopefully we won’t pick up any injuries."

Galway were relegated from Division 1A of the Allianz Hurling League and they will have to put that disappointment behind them as they prepare for another crack at the All-Ireland crown.

Despite a semi-final loss to Clare, Canning believes Kilkenny are the team to beat in the race for the Liam McCarthy Cup but he is confident Galway can threaten their dominance.

"We are looking forward to it. We didn’t get to the All-Ireland last year because we were a bad team, and hopefully it will be a good year for us. But, for sure, everybody respects everybody else," Canning is quoted as saying in the Irish Examiner.

"I don’t think any player trains so much and puts in so much of an effort for seasons, or even for this year alone, to not think that they can win an All-Ireland.

"I certainly believe we have a chance of winning. I am sure the Clare lads, the Tipperary lads, the Cork lads and so on have a belief that they can win it."

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