No changes for Counihan’s Cork

Cork manager Conor Counihan has opted to field an unchanged team for Sunday’s All-Ireland SFC quarter-final against Roscommon.

There was much speculation that Counihan would alter his side after the sluggish extra-time victory over Limerick last week, but he has remained loyal to his starting line-up.

Noel O’Leary, Derek Kavanagh and Paul Kerrigan were brought in as late changes for the Limerick game, and the trio have retained their starting places for this weekend’s Croke Park clash (throw-in 2pm).

O’Leary will link up again with team captain Graham Canty and Paudie Kissane in the half-back line, supporting a midfield partnership of Kavanagh and Aidan Walsh.

Kerrigan gets the nod at right half-forward, with Donncha O’Connor, who kicked two points as a substitute against Limerick, and Fintan Goold among the attackers to miss out.

Nicholas Murphy and Alan O’Connor also have to be content with places on the bench.

The Rebels are bidding to maintain their 100% record in All-Ireland quarter-finals, having won all six of their previous fixtures in the last-eight of the All-Ireland Championship.

Cork won their first ever Championship meeting with Roscommon in the 1990 All-Ireland semi-final, claiming a 0-17 to 0-10 victory, but the Rossies evened thing up with a one-point first round qualifier success at Dr Hyde Park in 2003.

Speaking ahead of Cork's fourth game in as many weeks, goalkeeper Alan Quirke said: "There's no doubt about it, it's going to be physically difficult because of all the football we've played over the last few weeks.

"But teams have managed to do it coming from the qualifiers in the past, so there's no reason why we can't do that.

"There were no real celebrations after the Limerick game. It was just an ice bath and a bit of grub and we had a good recovery session on Sunday.

"We have a good panel and that's what we'll need this weekend.

"To beat Limerick in their own ground is an achievement that we're proud of. We've learnt a lot from these qualifier games - winning is a great habit to have and hopefully we can keep holding onto it," he said.

CORK (SFC v Roscommon): A Quirke; R Carey, M Shields, J O’Sullivan; N O’Leary, G Canty (capt), P Kissane; D Kavanagh, A Walsh; P Kerrigan, P O’Neill, P Kelly; D Goulding, C Sheehan, C O’Neill.

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