Tuesday 22 August 2017

Carroll nets starting spot as Laois plot route past Barrowsiders

Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

LAOIS hurling boss Niall Rigney has named Pat Carroll between the sticks for Saturday's Leinster SHC clash with Carlow in Portlaoise.

Carroll replaces Eoin Reilly who was first choice for much of their NHL campaign which saw them finish third in Division 2.

Dual star Cahir Healy lines out at full-back for the O'Moore men, while Shane Dollard has shaken off a knock to take his place at wing-forward.

Meanwhile, Wicklow's appeal to have their Leinster SFC quarter-final clash with Westmeath played in either Carlow or Portlaoise has fallen on deaf ears, with the Leinster Council ruling that the match will take place in Tullamore.

The Wicklow County Board lodged the appeal on the grounds of the disproportionate distances the respective sets of supporters would have to travel and argued that supporters from Dunlavin, Wicklow's nearest town to Tullamore, would have to travel 51 miles whereas Kilbeggan is only seven miles from the venue.

They also pointed out that they had travelled to O'Connor Park for a match against the same opposition last year, which Westmeath won after extra-time.

unlikely

Wicklow advanced to a date with the Lake County after seeing off Carlow in O'Moore Park last Sunday. And Barrowsiders star Brendan Murphy looks unlikely to play again this summer after he was hit with a proposed eight-week ban. The Rathvilly man was shown a straight red and reported for verbal abuse by referee Gearoid O Conamha, who flashed a total of 19 cards (16 yellow) over the course of the 70 minutes.

Verbal abuse normally carries a four-week suspension but, as the powerful midfielder was also sent off in the NFL Division 4 clash with Clare, the proposed suspension has been doubled as the two offences took place within the past 48 weeks.

The Garden County's hurlers could be without talismanic forward Don Hyland for their Christy Ring Cup quarter final against Meath in Newbridge on Saturday.

Hyland, a former Railway Cup player with Leinster, is battling to overcome a recurring groin injury.

Antrim boss Liam Bradley has added St Gall's star Kevin McGourty to his squad ahead of Sunday's Ulster SFC opener against Tyrone in Casement Park.

McGourty follows in the footsteps of his brother CJ, who returned to the county squad after helping the Belfast club to the All-Ireland club title. And, with the likes of Brendan Herron and Kevin Niblock struggling with injury, the 27-year-old could yet feature against Tyrone.

Irish Independent

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