O'Mahony gets an 'A' for resetting broken toe

KIRK PENTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 10:33 AM ET

If this football thing doesn't work out, Duncan O'Mahony should look into medicine.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers punter had to do his own dirty work late Sunday night when he stubbed his foot on a closet door in hotel room. The fourth toe on his right foot was broken, and it was at a 90-degree angle.

Not pretty.

"I put it back in, and the doctor commended me on relocating the toe," O'Mahony said yesterday. "He said if I hadn't put it in properly he'd have to re-break it and set it. He said it was put in perfectly."

The bad break will prevent O'Mahony from punting on Friday night in Winnipeg's home- and season-opener against the Toronto Argonauts at Canad Inns Stadium.

"I wanted to get off -- pardon the pun -- on a good foot here and do well in this city," O'Mahony said. "It's just bad timing. And maybe sitting for a while is better than coming in and hurting it (more).

"... This team, this community, wants some consistency out of their kicking and punting game. I believe I'm that person to come in and fill the punting role, and it's just a bad start. Things will turn around."

THE REPLACEMENT: Rookie placekicker Alexis Serna will take care of the punting on Friday night. He punted for the first time last fall at Oregon State, averaging an NCAA Division I-worst 35.4 yards per boot.

He stopped punting after the season to concentrate on his placekicking in preparation for the NFL draft. When he wasn't picked down south and the CFL looked like his next destination, he started punting again.

That was only last month.

"I'm still trying to get back into the groove of things," Serna said. "It went pretty well today. I've been hitting the ball pretty well this week, so I'm excited about it.

"... I've been hitting 60 and 65 (yards) out here a few times. I'm probably hitting it about 10 yards further than when I was in college -- if I can get ahold of it."

LATE HITS: The backup punter on Friday will be rookie Canadian receiver Aaron Hargreaves, a lefty who hammered a few yesterday. "Strong leg, but not a guy that's done a lot of it," head coach Doug Berry said. "If he was going to be a punter he would need to work at it but certainly can suffice in a backup capacity." ... Fullback Graeme Bell would likely be the backup placekicker ... Left guard Matt Sheridan won't play against the Argos. That means first-round pick Brendon LaBatte will make his CFL debut as a starter in Sheridan's spot ... As of 4 p.m. yesterday, the Bombers had sold 23,500 tickets for Friday's game.


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