Tuesday 19 June 2018

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Gleeson and Mahony back for battered Déise as Tipp start 'Bubbles'

Three-time All-Star defender Noel Connors is also passed fit despite coming off at half-time against the Banner with a back injury. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile
Three-time All-Star defender Noel Connors is also passed fit despite coming off at half-time against the Banner with a back injury. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

Michael Verney

Derek McGrath has been given a welcome boost with Austin Gleeson and Pauric Mahony named in Waterford's starting 15 for their crucial Munster SHC clash with Tipperary in the Gaelic Grounds tomorrow (4.0).

The Déise boss has been dealt a series of injury blows with Tadhg de Búrca (collarbone), Darragh Fives (calf) and Barry Coughlan (broken hand) all ruled out for the rest of the provincial campaign so the return of 2016 Hurler of the Year Gleeson and ace attacker Mahony is a huge lift.

Three-time All-Star defender Noel Connors is also passed fit despite coming off at half-time against the Banner with a back injury but Maurice Shanahan is not named to start after picking up a knock last weekend.

It's a much-changed side with Mikey Kearney, Stephen Roche, DJ Foran, Stephen Bennett and Patrick Curran coming in as they play for their survival in the Championship but captain Kevin Moran plays no part as he serves a suspension for his dismissal against Clare.

Tipp show just one change in personnel as Michael Ryan rewards John 'Bubbles' O'Dwyer for his second-half contribution against Cork last weekend with the Killenaule attacker replacing Patrick 'Bonner' Maher in attack.

There are a number of positional changes with All-Ireland-winning captain Brendan Maher reverting to half-back from midfield in a switch with Ronan Maher.

Options

Skipper Pádraic Maher starts at centre-back, the in-form Jason Forde moves to centre-forward as Seamus Callanan is named at the edge of the square while the Premier's defensive options are bolstered by the welcome return of former All-Star defender Cathal Barrett to the match-day 26.

Conal Keaney returns to spearhead the Dublin attack in their do-or-die Leinster SHC meeting with Offaly in Parnell Park tomorrow (3.0) while Dean Brosnan, who replaces Luke Meade, is John Meyler's only change ahead of Cork's meeting with Limerick in Páirc Uí Chaoimh tonight (7.0).

Elsewhere, Kerry football boss Eamonn Fitzmaurice has given youth its fling with a new-look Kingdom side to face Clare tomorrow in Killarney (3.30).

Teenage sensation David Clifford makes a seamless transition to the senior side having captained the minors to All-Ireland glory only nine months ago and he partners former James O'Donoghue and Paul Geaney in a powerful full-forward line.

Dr Crokes keeper Shane Murphy starts in goal while Jason Foley, Ronan Shanahan and Gavin White are also handed Championship debuts in defence. Micheál Burns and Seán O'Shea get the nod on attack as Kieran Donaghy, Darran O'Sullivan, Anthony Maher and Barry John Keane are named on a strong bench.

One player which Kerry must do without until at least 2020, however, is Mark O'Connor after the Kingdom starlet signed a one-year extension with AFL side Geelong.

Opponents Clare are unchanged while Malachy O'Rourke keeps faith for Monaghan's Ulster SFC semi-final clash with Fermanagh.

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