Friday 23 February 2018

Today: Ladies NFL Division 1 Final

Cork v Monaghan, Parnell Park, 4.45, G Corrigan (Down) *Live TG4

DESPITE scoring 1-8 against Laois in last year's decider, Cork forward Valerie Mulcahy must be content with a place on the bench for this final showdown.

Mulcahy is expected to feature at some point at Parnell Park, however, having come off the bench to score Cork's third goal in their semi-final victory over Meath.

Cork have made one change in personnel from the team that started against the Royal County, with Annie Walsh replacing Laura McMahon at wing-forward.

Monaghan, appearing in a first Division 1 final since 2001, are unchanged from the team that beat Dublin in their semi-final.

Cork are chasing a seventh Division 1 title in eight seasons and if they win, the All-Ireland champions will become the first team since Kerry (1987-91) to win five Division 1 crowns in a row.

Monaghan would dearly love to stop them in their tracks in what is a repeat of last year's All-Ireland final, won by Cork at Croke Park. Cork will start as favourites but can expect stiff opposition from free-scoring Monaghan, who were impressive 2-9 to 0-7 winners against Dublin in the last-four.

Verdict: Cork

CORK -- E Harte; AM Walsh, D O'Reilly, R Buckley; B Corkery, B Stack, G O'Flynn; J Murphy, N Kelly; A Walsh, C O'Sullivan, G Kearney; N Cleary, R Buckley, O Farmer.

MONAGHAN -- L Martin; G McNally, S Courtney, C Reilly; L McEnaney, N Fahy, A McAnespie; A Casey, I Kierans; T McNally, C Courtney, C McAnespie; C McConnell, N Kindlon, C Mohan.

Division 2 final

Mayo v Galway, Parnell Park, 3.0, S Duane (Kildare) *Live TG4

CONNACHT rivals Mayo and Galway will battle it out for the right to play top-flight football, after both counties were relegated last season.

Mayo are unchanged from their semi-final victory over Kerry while Galway, who needed a late Gillian Joyce goal to see off Clare, make two changes.

Charlotte Cooney and Lisa Leonard, who replaced Edel Concannon and Marie Brennan in the semi-final, hold onto their positions at the expense of those players. Mayo will start as favourites -- they thrashed Galway by 3-14 to 1-7 back in February and are the smart choice to get the job done.

Verdict: Mayo.

MAYO -- N Tarpey; A Bell, N Tierney, L Ryder; S Tierney, C Egan, C Connolly; M Carter, C McManamon; F McHale, C Staunton, Y Byrne; T McNicholas, D Doherty, N Kelly.

GALWAY -- L Murphy; M Coyne, E Curley, S Divilly; B Hannon, S Conneally, S Burke; A Daly, C Hehir; C Cooney, D Brennan, L Leonard; T Leonard, G Joyce, G Conneally.

Division 3 final

Westmeath v Leitrim, Parnell Park, 1.15, M Henry (Cavan) *Live TG4

WESTMEATH feature nine survivors from last October's All-Ireland intermediate final replay victory over Cavan in their starting line-up for today's clash with Leitrim.

When the teams met in March, Leitrim won by two points and that reverse was Westmeath's only defeat in the entire campaign to date, as they finished on top of the table.

Westmeath, Division 4 champions in 2011, blitzed Armagh with five goals in the semis, but they must keep a close eye on Leitrim's star forward Aine Tighe, who scored 2-9 when they beat Limerick in the 2010 Division 4 decider.

Both Leitrim and Westmeath are unchanged from their semi-final wins over Down and Armagh respectively.

Verdict: Westmeath

LEITRIM -- M Guckian; M Stenson, E McWeeney, S Kerrigan; K Gilgunn, S Tighe, L McWeeney; S Fowley, D Ward; N Tighe, S McManus, K Keegan; L Brennan, E Farrell, A Tighe.

WESTMEATH -- C Warburton; A Martin, C Finch, A Brady; K Boyce-Jordan, J Rogers, K McDermott; M-A Foley, R Kearney; E Finn, F Claffey, J Maher; L Walsh, K Hegarty, C Blundell.

Christy Ring Cup (SH)

(Extra-time if necessary)

Round 2A -- Wicklow v Derry, Arklow, 2.30, P Murphy (Carlow).

Verdict: Wicklow

Down v Meath, Newry, 2.30, E Hassan (Derrry)

Verdict: Down

Round 2B -- Kildare v Kerry, Newbridge, 2.30, T Carroll (Offaly).

Verdict: Kerry

London v Mayo, Ruislip, 1.0, D Hughes (Carlow).

Verdict: London

Nicky Rackard Cup (SH)

(Extra-time if necessary)

Round 2 -- Armagh v Sligo, Crossmaglen, 5.0, L MacAuley (Antrim).

Verdict: Armagh

Monaghan v Donegal, Clones, 2.30, D Magee (Down).

Verdict: Monaghan

Lory Meagher Cup (SH)

(Extra-time if necessary)

Round 2 -- Leitrim v Warwickshire, Ballinamore, 12.0, C Browne (Galway). Verdict: Leitrim

Leinster MHC quarter-finals

Carlow v Dublin, Dr Cullen Park, 3.0, B Redmond (Wexford).

Verdict: Dublin

Offaly v Laois, Tullamore, 7.0, P O'Dwyer (Carlow).

Verdict: Offaly

Irish Independent

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