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Rebel legend Cunningham set to land Ballygunner job

FORMER Cork goalkeeper Ger Cunningham looks set to be unveiled as the new senior hurling team manager of Waterford club side Ballygunner next weekend.

The three-time All-Ireland medallist is currently involved with the UCC Freshers team and served as selector and goalkeeper coach to the Cork teams under the management of Donal O’Grady and John Allen from 2003-2006.

St Finbarr’s great Cunningham was favourite to succeed Allen when he stepped down as manager in 2006 but the position instead went to current Rebels boss Gerald McCarthy.

Cunningham’s name will be put forward for ratification by Ballygunner delegates attending next Sunday’s scheduled AGM and it is envisaged that there will be no problems in sealing the deal.

Ballygunner clubmen Mick Gaffney, a former coach, and Tom Fives have been tipped to serve alongside Cunningham as selectors. Cunningham will take over the reins from current Waterford selector Peter Queally, who has coached the team for the past two seasons.

Meanwhile, Mark Harrington has been drafted into the Cork football attack for Saturday night’s McGrath Cup final against UL in Páirc Uí Rinn.

The Douglas sharpshooter’s inclusion is the only change from the side that emphatically defeated UCC in last Sunday’s semi-final clash. He is named at right corner-forward in a move that sees Cathrach Keane drop down to the bench. Harrington, who was a part of the Cork panel in last year’s championship, impressed upon his introduction aginst UCC, registering 0-3.

The starting 15 is once more an experimental line-up with only eight member’s of last season’s panel named in the side. The game is a last chance to impress before the start of the league on Sunday week, when Cork open their Division 2 campaign at home to Meath. Cork’s established side are likely to have another challenge on Saturday, when they face Mayo, and Counihan is expected to cut the panel to 30 early next week.

Cork (SF v UL): K Murphy; B Crowley, N O’Donovan, K Harrington; D Murphy, O Sexton, R O’Sullivan; A O’Sullivan, A O’Connor; C McCarthy, F Goold, P Kelly; M Harrington, C McManus, K O’Sullivan. Subs: P White, R Brosnan, C O’Leary, E Burke, P Gayer, S O’Sullivan, C Keane, D Relihan, G McCarthy, S Hayes, R Power, P O’Shea.