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Roscommon facing quick turnaround

CONNACHT Council have defended the timing of the opening game in their SFC, which gives Roscommon's footballers little recovery time after their shock defeat by Longford in the Division 4 final last weekend.

The defending Connacht champions face New York next Sunday in the first game of their title defence and the Rossies are flying out on Thursday.

However, manager Fergal O'Donnell is unhappy with the scheduling. "In fairness to fellas who are in college and different things, a week to prepare for two big games is a bit crazy," said O'Donnell.

But Connacht Council secretary John Prenty has said the schedule is designed specifically to suit student players.

"We used to play the New York fixture on the second weekend in May but we found that caused a lot of problems because of college exams and brought it forward to avoid that," he said.

"New York would prefer if it was played later but we're going with the earlier date to avoid causing problems with players' exams."

Roscommon should not have any injury concerns over full-forward Senan Kilbride, who was substituted within minutes of scoring their only goal last Saturday. Kilbride complained of a hamstring twinge in the warm-up -- and again after he had rattled the net -- and was immediately withdrawn as a precaution.

However, he is expected to be fit for the game in the North Bronx.

Irish Independent