Star forward Rory Donnelly, who was sent off in a National League game against London and subsequently received a three-month suspension, will have his appeal against the sentence heard in Croke Park tonight.
If Donnelly is acquitted, he will take his place at right-corner forward for next Sunday’s local derby. Limerick boss Mickey Ned O’Sullivan introduces two championship newcomers for Sunday’s meeting of the great rivals. They are corner back Shane Gallagher and wing back Andrew Lane, both regulars during the league campaign.
Team captain Muiris Gavin failed to pass a fitness test last evening, though he is included in the substitutes, as is his Monaleen clubmate Owen Keating.
Johnny Murphy returns after injury and is named at full forward.
Wicklow introduce three new players to senior football championship for their opening game in the Bank of Ireland Leinster championship first round tie with Carlow at Wexford Park on Sunday.
Goalkeeper Raymond Daniels, full back Damien Power and midfielder JP Dalton have all been given their call-up papers.
Missing from the team which was pipped by Kildare in last year’s championship are Robert Hollingworth, David Dillon, David Smollen, Thomas Smollen, Thomas Harney, JP Davis and the O’ hAnnaidh brothers Brendan and Dara.
Defeated National League finalists Galway will name their team to play Sligo in the Connacht championship at Pearse Stadium on Sunday later in the week. Towering midfielder Joe Bergin, who has been out of action since last August with a knee injury, is back in training but is unlikely to receive a call-up for this game.
Antrim will be without Gavin Madden and Conor McGoldrick for their Ulster SFC clash with Fermanagh in Enniskillen on Sunday. Regarded one of the best forwards in the game, Madden has been forced to retire on medical grounds, while McGoldrick has a serious leg injury, which has not responded to treatment. Antrim will announce their team tomorrow night.
Meanwhile Denis Moloney is unlikely to play any further part in Limerick’s All-Ireland SHC campaign this summer due to the knee injury he sustained against Tipperary last Sunday.
The Doon defender suffered the blow midway through the first half. Falling awkwardly on his knee, the 20-year-old’s championship debut was disappointingly cut short as he was stretchered off. A subsequent X-ray threw up the possibility of cruciate knee ligament damage and wing back Moloney is expected to undergo further tests to determine the full extent of the injury.
Meanwhile, the replay of the Ulster SFC in Clones on Saturday has caused a major revamp of the club fixtures programme for this weekend.
The Gormley-PVC senior football championship was due to get under way this weekend with five games down for decision, two on Saturday evening and three games on Sunday. That schedule has now been shelved and the Games Administration Committee has also postponed any league matches that involve county players in the intermediate and junior football leagues tonight and the only games that will be played in those leagues on Sunday afternoon will be those that do not involve county players.
Wednesday next, May 24, will see a full round of fixtures in the senior and junior football leagues with the intermediate league on hold due to the staging of the opening games in the intermediate football championship on Saturday May 27 and Sunday May 28 next.
WICKLOW (SF v Carlow): R. Daniels; C. Hyland, D. Power, B. Daly; K. Manning, W. Callaghan, T. Burke; J. Stafford, J. P. Dalton; P. Cronin, L. Glynn, P. Dalton; T. Gill, W. O’Gorman, J. Daniels.
LIMERICK: (SF v Clare) J. Kiely; S. Gallagher, J. McCarthy, P. Browne, C. Mullane, S. Lavin, A. Lane; J. Stokes, J. Galvin; P. Ahern, D. Reidy, S. Buckley, M. Crowley, J.Murphy, M. Reidy
CLARE (SF v Limerick): D. O’Brien; P. Gallagher, C. Whelan, D. Kelly; D. Blake, B. Considine, N. Considine; G. Quinlan, P. O’Dwyer; David Russell, M. O’Shea, Denis Russell; A. N. Other, E. Coughlan, D. Heddington.