Wednesday 18 January 2017

Leinster: County-by-county

Published 09/05/2011 | 12:07

ANTRIM: All-Ireland titles: None,Leinster titles: None

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Manager: Dinny Cahill (2nd year)

Captain: Eddie McCloskey

Last year: Offaly 2-26, Antrim 3-16 (aet, Leinster quarter-final); Antrim 2-18, Carlow 3-12; Antrim 1-17, Dublin 0-19; Cork 1-25, Antrim 0-19 (All-Ireland quarter-final)

2011 NHL: 4th Div 2 (W4, L3)

Last big championship achievement: Beaten in the 1989 All-Ireland final.

Key man: Neil McManus.

Who could make a name for himself? Conor Carson.

Fantasy signing: Joe Canning.

Prospects: Modest. Dinny Cahill and his team probably never got appropriate credit for derailing Dublin's championship last year. Given they had also taken Offaly to extra-time in Leinster, only the foolhardy will take them lightly this year. A Leinster semi-final appearance is not beyond them, but that would then bring them into contact with reality in the stripey form of Kilkenny.

Betting: Leinster 150/1, All-Ireland 250/1.

First game: v Laois, Portlaoise, Saturday, May 14.

CARLOW

All-Ireland titles: 0

Leinster titles: 0

Manager: Kevin Ryan (3rd year)

Captain: Paudie Kehoe

Last year: Laois 1-13, Carlow 0-10 (Leinster championship first round); Carlow 1-19, Laois 3-12; Antrim 2-18, Carlow 3-12 (Qualifiers, phase 1)

2011 NHL: 6th Div 2 (W3, L4)

Last big championship achievement: None.

Key man: Edward Coady.

Who could make a name for himself? Craig Doyle.

Fantasy signing: Padraic Maher.

Prospects: Poor. Signed off from an underwhelming league campaign with a risible 32-point trimming against Clare. "We're not that bad and they're not that good," said Kevin Ryan afterwards.

Imploded a little with three red cards in their final outing last season too. Plenty of hurling in them, but need to work on temperament.

Betting: Leinster 300/1, All-Ireland 1,000/1.

First game: v Westmeath, Carlow, Sunday, May 15.

DUBLIN

All-Ireland titles: 6 (most recent 1938)

Leinster titles: 23 (1961)

Manager: Anthony Daly (3rd year)

Captain: John McCaffrey

Last year: Dublin 0-25, Laois 0-16; Kilkenny 4-19, Dublin 0-12 (Leinster championship semi-final); Dublin 2-22, Clare 0-15; Antrim 1-17, Dublin 0-19 (Qualifiers, phase 3)

2011 NHL: Div 1 champions (W4, D2, L1, then beat Kilkenny 0-22 to 1-7 in final).

Last big championship achievement: 1961 -- Leinster champions.

Key man: Conal Keaney.

Who could make a name for himself? Daire Plunkett.

Fantasy signing? Lar Corbett.

Prospects: Decent. The arrival of Conal Keaney and Ryan O'Dwyer has added much-needed steel to the Dubs' attack and, if their tallies of wides continued to cause concern in the league, they looked closer to the real deal than ever before. Still, the Leinster draw has been unkind. Must beat Offaly and, probably, Galway just to make the provincial final. That said, look the most improved team in the country.

Betting: Leinster 9/2, All-Ireland 12/1.

First game: v Offaly, Croke Park, Sunday, May 29.

GALWAY

All-Ireland titles: 4 (1988)

Leinster titles: 0

Manager: John McIntyre (3rd year)

Captain: Damien Joyce

Last year: Galway 2-22, Wexford 1-14; Galway 2-19, Offaly 3-16; Galway 3-17, Offaly 2-18; Kilkenny 1-19, Galway 1-12 (Leinster championship final); Tipperary 3-17, Galway 3-16 (All-Ireland quarter-final)

2011 NHL: 5th Div 1 (W4, L3)

Last big championship achievement: 2005 -- beaten All-Ireland finalists.

Key man: Joe Canning.

Who could make a name for himself? Iarla Tannian.

Fantasy signing: Tommy Walsh.

Prospects: Hard to evaluate. Missing their two primary attacking threats, Joe Canning and Damien Hayes, for all but the last round of league games and shipped a deeply worrying trouncing by Tipperary. Will have their hands full with either Offaly or Dublin in the Leinster semi-final. That said, logically, still the biggest provincial threat to Kilkenny.

Betting: Leinster 11/4, All-Ireland 7/1.

First game: v Westmeath or Carlow, Saturday, June 4.

KILKENNY

All-Ireland titles: 32 (2009)

Leinster titles: 67 (2010)

Manager: Brian Cody (13th year)

Captain: Brian Hogan

Last year: Kilkenny 4-19, Dublin 0-12; Kilkenny 1-19, Galway 1-12; Kilkenny 3-22, Cork 0-19; Tipperary 4-17, Kilkenny 1-18 (All-Ireland final)

2011 NHL: Runners-up Div 1 (W5, D1, L1, then lost to Dublin 0-22 to 1-7 in final)

Last big championship achievement: Reigning Leinster champions.

Key man: Richie Power (pictured).

Who could make a name for himself? Paddy Hogan

Fantasy signing: John Mullane.

Prospects: . The pursuit of five-in-a-row came unstuck against a venomous Tipperary last September, but Brian Cody still looks to have the armoury for another epic challenge. Will hope that Henry Shefflin can play a leading role and that Tommy Walsh rediscovers his mojo. Despite league final display, the team to beat if they get up any head of steam.

Betting: Leinster 8-13, All-Ireland 2/1.

First game: v Antrim, Laois or Wexford, Saturday, June 18.

LAOIS

All-Ireland titles: 1 (1915)

Leinster titles: 3 (1949)

Manager: Brendan Fennelly (1st year)

Captain: James Walsh

Last year: Laois 1-13, Carlow 0-10; Dublin 0-25, Laois 0-16 (Leinster championship quarter-final); Carlow 1-19, Laois 3-12 (Qualifiers, preliminary round)

2011 NHL: 3rd Div 2 (W4, L3)

Last big championship achievement: 1949 Leinster champions.

Key man: Willie Hyland.

Who could make a name for himself? Sean Bourke.

Fantasy signing: Noel McGrath.

Prospects: Championship hopes petered out very limply last season against Carlow and little to signpost renewed impetus here. Could do with a significant championship scalp and capable of being an awkward obstacle to better-fancied teams. That said, their summer is unlikely to extend beyond June.

Betting: Leinster 300/1, All-Ireland 400/1.

First game: v Antrim, Portlaoise, Saturday, May 14.

OFFALY

All-Ireland titles: 4 (1998)

Leinster titles: 9 (1995)

Manager: Joe Dooley (4th year)

Captain: Shane Dooley (pictured)

Last year: Offaly 2-26, Antrim 3-16 (aet); Offaly 3-16, Galway 2-19; Galway 3-17, Offaly 2-18; Offaly 1-19, Limerick 1-13; Tipperary 0-21, Offaly 1-12 (Qualifiers phase 3)

2011 NHL: 8th Div 1 (W1, L6)

Last big championship achievement: 1998 All-Ireland champions.

Key man: Shane Dooley.

Who could make a name for himself? Brian Mulrooney.

Fantasy signing: John Gardiner.

Prospects: Relegation from Division 1 represents a hammer blow to morale after so much progress was palpably made in 2010. Still over-reliant on Shane Dooley for scores. Hard to see them make a provincial final, yet they won't see it that way, especially with Kilkenny on the other side of the draw.

Betting: Leinster 50/1, All-Ireland 100/1

First game: v Dublin, Croke Park, Sunday, May 29.

WESTMEATH

All-Ireland titles: 0

Leinster titles: 0

Manager: Brian Hanley (1st year)

Captain: Eoin Price

Last year: Not involved (Won Christy Ring Cup)

2011 NHL: 8th Div 2 (W0, L7)

Last big championship achievement: None.

Key man: Brendan Murtagh.

Who could make a name for himself? Alan Devine.

Fantasy signing: Henry Shefflin.

Prospects: Expectations will be low for their debut season in the Leinster championship after a traumatic league campaign that resulted in a change of management. Will target the Carlow game. Anything beyond that will be deep in bonus territory.

Betting: Leinster 500/1, All-Ireland 1,000/1.

First game: v Carlow, Dr Cullen Park, Sunday, May 15.

WEXFORD

All-Ireland titles: 6 (1996)

Leinster titles: 19 (2004)

Manager: Colm Bonnar (3rd year)

Captain: Darren Stamp

Last year: Galway 2-22, Wexford 1-14 (Leinster championship quarter-final); Tipperary 3-24, Wexford 0-19 (Qualifying, phase 1).

2011 NHL: 7th Div 1 (W1, D1, L5).

Last big championship achievement: 2004 Leinster champions.

Key man: Darren Stamp.

Who could make a name for himself? Matthew O'Hanlon.

Fantasy signing: Richie Power.

Prospects: Same old, same old. Will probably have to stand up to stripey neighbours to get their championship off the ground and, despite a wonderful Houdini act in the league, Wexford still seem some way off top-rank pace. Two drubbings in last year's championship gave an indication of the miles they still need to travel.

Betting: Leinster 18/1, All-Ireland 66/1

First game: v Antrim or Laois, Sunday, May 29.

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