The Kilkenny hurling team will be without two star players until June due to serious knee injuries. Henry Shefflin and John Tennyson tore cruciate ligaments in their respective knees last season and will need extensive rehabilitation to return to action.

Shefflin infamously attempted to and failed to play in the All-Ireland Final last season only weeks after injuring the knee but he is on schedule to return as expected. However Tennyson has suffered a setback in his recovery after the knee infected following surgery and had to be drained.

Selector Martin Fogarty confirmed that the duo would be out for the league campaign instead hoping for a championship appearance, "We can forget about the league for them. We hope they can play some part of the championship and an optimistic target would be the early rounds."

Both players have previously suffered the same injury which Fogarty believes will make it easier on them, "They've been through this before and know how tough it can be. The key for them is to take their time. The positive is once they get through all the work they'll be back and that's a huge motivating factor."