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Dowling’s strong Easter Cup hand

IF LAST weekend’s opening round of the Ladbrokes Easter Cup is anything to go by, the competition will take some winning with the oldest classic packed with incredible quality.

Not for the first time in the past couple of years, Liam Dowling has a very strong hand with his ‘Ballymac’ outfit responsible for four of the top nine in the sponsors’ betting. Great Name That is favourite after a sensational 29.53 return last week.

He may need to repeat that level of form if he is to continue his winning ways in a red-hot third heat of this evening’s second round where he will be joined by his brilliant kennel companion Ballymac Ariel, the hugely talented Billys Diva and speedsters Newinn Sheedy and Minglers Popeye.

Another of Dowling’s star performers, Ballymac Kingdom, is favourite for the second heat despite a tricky draw in five. If he is to confirm last week’s form over Leger champion Epic Hero, he will need to hit the ground running, while Golden Tiger and Boylesportsbingo can’t be dismissed.

The clash of Native Maestro and Ballymac Wild in the final heat will be eagerly anticipated. The pair met seven days ago with Native Maestro coming out on top. The opening heat sees the Pat Buckley-trained duo of Glengar Bale and Knocknaboul Syd take on the brilliant Newinn Session. Throw the powerful Amazing Champ into the mix and it should make for fascinating viewing. Much will depend on whether Knocknaboul Syd can clear his rivals into the turn.

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