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McCaff' to lead boys in blue

JOHNNY McCAFFREY will captain Dublin for their New Year's Day encounter against the Dubs Stars hurlers at St Peregrine's (12.30).

The Lucan Lion will be playing against his younger brother, Matt, who was selected in the Dubs Stars defence.

The Dublin skipper will be partnered at midfield by Liam Rushe, while Conal Keaney will lead a tasty looking Dublin attack.

It includes the experience of 'Dotsy' O'Callaghan and talented marksmen in Conor McCormack, Danny Sutcliffe, Paul Ryan and Eamon Dillon.

Michael Carton has been named in the Dublin defence where he will be joined by Ruairí Trainor, who has been attracting admiring glances from the county footballers.

Finn McGarry is selected in goal, and the rearguard is completed by Conor Murphy, Simon Lambert, Peter Kelly and Oisín Gough.

Gough's Cuala colleague, Mark Schutte, is on the Dublin bench. His brother, Paul, will wear the number two shirt for the Dubs Stars.

DUBLIN (SH v Dubs Stars) - F McGarry; C Murphy, M Carton, R Trainor; S Lambert, P Kelly, O Gough; J McCaffrey, L Rushe; D O'Callaghan, C McCormack, D Sutcliffe; P Ryan, C Keaney, E Dillon. Subs: K Byrne, A Clabby, C Cronin, C Crummy, T Devlin, K Dunne, S McClelland, N McMorrow, M Schutte, G Whelan.

Cody calls for change

KILKENNY'S legendary hurling manager, Brian Cody, has added his voice to the debate concerning the structure of the Championship by calling for a Champions League-style All-Ireland senior hurling championship.

Kilkenny's 10-time All-Ireland winning manager believes the competition would be better served with games staged on a home and away basis.

"What happens at present is very good. I would love a Champions League type hurling championship though; I said that a few years ago," he said.

"When things are going good, I think that is the time to always try and improve it. Things are good at the moment and that is the time to think 'Right, how can we make things better?' and I think that if you can bring something new and exciting into the game I think the spectators will respond.

"The idea of home and away Championship matches between counties is very appealing."