Friday 14 December 2018

Cavan players 'won't be distracted by Mayo row'

Peter Leahy’s Mayo were rocked by the withdrawal of ten players and a selector from the county squad a few days out from their All-Ireland qualifier clash in Clones this Saturday. Stock photo: Sportsfile
Peter Leahy’s Mayo were rocked by the withdrawal of ten players and a selector from the county squad a few days out from their All-Ireland qualifier clash in Clones this Saturday. Stock photo: Sportsfile

Cavan manager James Daly says his side has not been distracted by the row in the Mayo ladies camp, but he knows their chances of winning Saturday's championship opener have been greatly improved by the controversy, writes DECLAN ROONEY.

Peter Leahy's Mayo were rocked by the withdrawal of ten players and a selector from the county squad a few days out from their All-Ireland qualifier clash in Clones this Saturday.

That ten included all eight panellists from the Carnacon club, including star forward Cora Staunton, as well as captain Sarah Tierney and vice-captain Fiona McHale, whose father, Michael, stepped down as selector.

Yet, following a day of turmoil in the county, Mayo had 24 players at training on Tuesday night and afterwards Leahy met with county board officials in attendance, where he is believed to have received their full support. This row in the Mayo camp erupted last week, but only became public on Tuesday. It is expected that the Mayo LGFA will break their silence and respond to that statement today, but to date Leahy has insisted that he wishes to concentrate on preparing his team's clash with Cavan.

But for the Breffni boss, it has been all about keeping his players focused on the game, and he feels they will still face a quality Mayo 15.

"It hasn't affected our preparation at all. We're still playing Mayo who were runners-up in the All-Ireland final last year and runners-up in Division 1 this year," said Daly.

"As far as we're concerned no matter who is playing for Mayo on Saturday, it is going to be a very, very good team."

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