Louth make a few Wee alterations

Frank Roche

LOUTH are banking on virtually the same template that demolished Meath on the last day of the league for their Leinster SFC opener against Westmeath on Sunday.

Despite recent lamentations from the Louth camp about being decimated by injuries and emigration, manager Peter Fitzpatrick has still been able to select a relatively strong line-up for the Navan clash.

In fact, the only change from the game that ensured Division Two survival at the Royals' expense sees Dreadnots man Liam Shevlin take over the full-back berth vacated by Dessie Finnegan, who is on his honeymoon.

With Shane Lennon a long-term injury absentee, Jim McEneaney (son of Monaghan boss Eamonn) will make his championship debut at full-forward.

McEneaney won't have to face Westmeath's first-choice full-back as Kieran Gavin has been ruled out with the quad muscle injury that has sidelined DCU's Sigerson-winning captain since mid-March. Garrycastle skipper John Gaffey takes up the No 3 beat.

Denis Glennon has shaken off a back injury to take his place in the inside forward line for brother David. Paul Sharry is listed alongside but could well revert to centre-back in a swap with veteran campaigner Michael Ennis.

Elsewhere, Longford's David Barden has shaken off his ankle injury in time for their Leinster showdown with Laois at Pearse Park.


LOUTH (SF v Westmeath): N Gallagher; P Rath, L Shevlin, G Hoey; R Finnegan, J Carr, D Byrne; P Keenan, R Carroll; D Crilly, M Brennan, A Reid; D Maguire, J McEneaney, D Clarke.

WESTMEATH (SF): G Connaughton; M Curley, J Gaffey, K Maguire; D Harte, M Ennis, D McDermott; J Heslin, P Bannon; K Martin, G Egan, J Dolan; Denis Glennon, David Glennon, P Sharry.

LONGFORD (SF v Laois): D Sheridan; D Brady, B Gilleran, D Reilly; C Smyth, M Quinn, S Mulligan; G McElvanney, J Keegan; D Barden, P Barden, N Mulligan; D McElligot, B Kavanagh, S McCormack.

LIMERICK (SF v Waterford): B Scanlon; J McCarthy, P Brown, L O'Dwyer; S Lavin, J Riordan, P Ranahan; T Lee, P Kinnerk; E Barry, E O'Connor, S Buckley; G Collins, S O'Carroll, I Ryan.

LAOIS (SH v Carlow): E Reilly; C Coonan, D Maher, G Burke; C Dunne, M Whelan, M McEvoy; J Walsh, S Hanlon; S Maher, B Dunne, W Hyland; T Fitzgerald, N Foyle, D O'Mahoney.

CARLOW (SH v Laois): F Foley; A Corcoran, E Nolan, E Coady; J Corcoran, S Kavanagh, R Coady; J Kavanagh, A Gaule; E Byrne, J Kane, C Doyle; M Kavanagh, M Brennan, D Roberts.

WESTMEATH (SH v Antrim): S McGovern; C Jordan, A Price, P Fennell; P Dowdall, A McGrath, P Greville; A Clarke, J Clarke; B Murtagh, F Boyle, R Greville; N O'Brien, J Shaw, E Price.

LOUTH (SH v Sligo): J Connolly; D McArdle, W Morrissey, M Wallace; D O'Sullivan, R Byrne, D Horan; S Callan, D O'Hanrahan; D Dunne, S Fennell, D Murphy; K McNally, B Corcoran, A Wallace.