Sligo select side for London trip

The Sligo team chosen for Sunday's Connacht SFC opener against London (Ruislip, throw-in 2.30pm) shows only two changes to the side that started last summer's historic Connacht final win.

For his first championship match in charge, Sligo boss Tommy Jordan has made minimal changes with corner forward Gary Gaughan the only championship debutant.

The 19-year-old Gaughan, who plays his club football with Tourlestrane, is a promising player and will have to be marked tightly by the London defence.

Sligo are without their captain Noel McGuire, who is nursing a dislocated elbow, but the Easkey clubman is confident that his side will not give up the Nestor Cup without a fight.

"When you're craving success for so long, obviously there's going to be an outcry of emotions and it was such a huge lift for everyone in the county when we won last year," the defender said.

"It's disappointing we didn't take that on in the league - we went backwards if anything - but we will try to make amends in the championship. It's not even 12 months since we won the Connacht championship so we're not panicking.

"The bottom line is we know we're good enough if we get our acts together and hopefully we'll have another good run this summer."

For the London game, McGuire's place at full-back has gone to Pat Naughton who played there in a recent challenge match against Dublin.

Meanwhile, London manager Noel Dunning has also confirmed his starting line-up for Sunday's provincial encounter.

London will be captained once again by full-back Conor Beirne, a former Roscommon player whose experience is vital in the Exiles' defence.

The London half-back line includes the London-born Philip Morgan, who is a player to watch out for, and Eamon O'Cuiv, who previously played at underage level for Galway and is the son of the government minister of the same name.

Part of the London set-up since 2001, Mayo native Kevin Waldron will partner Gary Kane at midfield.

London lost all eight of their games in NFL Division 4 this season. However, they have shown some good form against Sligo in the Connacht championship over the years, running them close in 1988, 1993 and 1998.

The winners of Sunday's game will play Mayo in a Connacht semi-final on June 22.

SLIGO (SFC v London): P Greene; C Harrison, P Naughton, R Donovan; P McGovern, M McNamara, J Davey; K Quinn, E O'Hara; B Curran, M Breheny, B Egan; G Gaughan, J McPartland, D Kelly.

LONDON: B McBrearty; R Morgan, C Beirne (capt), G O'Hare; P Morgan, E O'Cuiv, N Spain; K Waldron, G Kane; F Cleary, P Hehir, F McMahon; S Maguire, M Hughes, P McDermott.

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