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Longford primed to stop the Slaneysiders

ALLIANZ FL DIVISION 3 FINAL

WEXFORD v LONGFORD

(Croke Park, Tonight 7.0, live TG4)

FIRST up, one obvious reason to explain why Wexford are fancied by the bookies: under Jason Ryan they've been a serious championship proposition, far more so than Longford.

The underlying message is, if Wexford are bothered, they'll take home the booty. Now, let us proffer a few pointers to the contrary. Longford's form-line has been more consistent, winning six times and drawing once. That included a last-day victory over Wexford - it may have been a promotion dead-rubber, borne out by the team selections, but they still did the needful.

Tomorrow they also have key forward Seán McCormack back from injury, bolstering an attack that already includes the in-form Paul Barden and Brian Kavanagh.

One final reason for midland optimism: Longford are three weeks away from their SFC opener against Laois whereas Wexford will play the winners in five.

ODDS: Wexford 8/15, Draw 15/2, Longford 15/8 VERDICT: Longford

ALLIANZ FL DIVISION 4 FINAL

FERMANAGH v WICKLOW

(Croke Park, Today 5.0, live TG4)

IT'S only last year since Fermanagh were auditioning for "worst team in Ireland bar Kilkenny" label, so promotion is a testament to the inspiring influence of Peter Canavan.

For all that, Wicklow's promotion after leapfrogging Clare on the last day is the real fairytale story of spring 2012. Not since 1994 have they managed to escape the basement division, but new boss Harry Murphy has now achieved what even Mick O'Dwyer couldn't manage.

Fermanagh squeezed home by two points when these sides met in Enniskillen, but they've tended to win their matches more convincingly and thus earn our vote.

ODDS: Fermanagh 4/7, Draw 15/2, Wicklow 7/4 VERDICT: Fermanagh


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