FEARS that Tyrone skipper Brian Dooher had broken his jaw in a club game over the weekend were allayed yesterday after it emerged his injury is not as serious as first thought.
Dooher was in league action for his club Clann na nGael against Killyman on Sunday when the incident occurred in the second half of the game.
He was tackled by an opponent while on a solo run and the pair fell awkwardly to the ground before Dooher was removed to hospital.
The match continued, with Dooher's side running out comfortable winners.
While the three-time All-Ireland winner remains a doubt for the club's intermediate championship opener against Augher this weekend, Dooher can expect to see action again this season, with the full extent of the injury to be confirmed later in the week.
Stephen O'Neill also lined out for Clann na nGael in the match. He clocked up 1-4 and afterwards committed himself to the Tyrone cause, despite an injury-hit couple of seasons.
“I'm happy to go back if selected,” he said. “I'll be looking forward to it. I'm sure other boys need time to sum things up, but I'm ready.
“It didn't really show against Dublin, but there's a lot of football in some of these boys. The fitness is as good as it has ever been. We were just a wee bit flat on the night.”
While O'Neill is set to return for 2012, the future of a host of other big names from Tyrone remains uncertain — not least Dooher, who has been committed to the Tyrone cause since 1996 and turned 36 last week.
Philip Jordan, Tyrone's only current All Star, believes the county could see a total of “six or seven” retirements in the coming months.
Ryan McMenamin (33), Brian McGuigan (31) and Kevin Hughes (31) are also expected to consider their futures after extraordinary careers at both underage and senior levels for the Red Hands.