Saturday 17 November 2018

Devenney still waiting on call from McIver

Cliona Foley

BRENDAN Devenney will be just another spectator at Donegal's big Ulster SFC clash with Derry on Sunday but insisted yesterday that he hasn't given up hope of playing a part for them this summer.

It was a Devenney goal that sensationally knocked Armagh out of Ulster last year and he has always been a man for the big occasion, but whether or not he is on the Donegal panel has been something of a mystery in recent weeks.

The St Eunan's star has confirmed to the Irish Independent that he is currently not on the county squad.

Yet he assured manager Brian McIver last Saturday that he was fully fit and hopes that he can make a contribution if Donegal get past the Oak Leaf county this weekend.

Devenney was part of the panel when Donegal last played a competitive match six weeks ago, a match that, coincidentally, they lost to Derry in the last round of the National League. He had only just returned then after an injury-disrupted season but was tipped to line out against Derry, only to be ruled out at the last minute after pulling his groin in a club game the night beforehand.

His injury continued for several weeks afterwards when he had to come off in two club games but having completed a full game for Letterkenny he spoke to McIver last weekend to give him a progress update.

"Brian told me he had his panel for Sunday already selected and his mind made up, so there's not a lot I can do," Devenney said yesterday.

However, his tally of 2-4 for St Eunan's against Gweedore in a recent club game has got the Donegal grapevine buzzing again about the merits of excluding him.

A County Board spokesman has said that McIver has not actually named his panel yet, which does leave an opening for Devenney to be recalled.

"I certainly feel I'm fit enough now to make a contribution. I'll be in the gym tonight and keep playing with my club and would hope to get back at some stage."

Devenney's St Eunan's colleague Rory Kavanagh proved he's made a full recovery from injury with his impressive club comeback alongside him a fortnight ago, but Barry Dunnion is not expected to be ready for the Derry game.

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