Ceaser has been named at midfield with Kerwick on the right flank of attack as manager Liam Sheedy makes three changes from the side that recently won the Waterford Crystal Tournament.
Conor O’Mahony and Pat Kerwick, who missed that final through illness, return, while Shane Maher lines out at midfield in place of the injured Shane McGrath. Conor O’Brien and Seamus Butler drop to the bench.
Galway introduce a new goalkeeper, three fledgling half backs and a debutant midfielder, for their league clash with Clare at Pearse Stadium on Sunday.
Under-21 star James Skehill takes over between the posts. Fellow under-21 colleagues Ger Mahon, John Lee and Andy Carey form a new half-back line for the Tribesmen, while Kevin Hynes receives his call-up papers at midfield.
UCC student Richie Foley is one of three National Hurling League debutants in the Waterford team which begins the defence of its title against Wexford at Walsh Park on Sunday.
A member of the Abbeyside club, Foley has been handed the key number six jersey in a defence in which the Mount Sion duo of Ken McGrath and Tony Browne will be the most notable absentees.
The other players making their league debut are wing forward Brian Farrell of De La Salle and Dunhill’s Shane Casey, whose father Tom was a regular in the Waterford teams of the 1980s. Casey is given the left full-forward position following impressive form in the Waterford Crystal tournament.
It is, however, an experimental side named by Justin McCarthy and his fellow selectors, with All Star Stephen Molumphy, Eoin McGrath, James Murray, and John Mullane, all conspicuous by their absence.
Shane O’Sullivan, who featured at full forward on the WIT team which scored a thrilling Fitzgibbon Cup victory over holders LIT last Wednesday, has been named as team captain Michael Walsh’s midfield partner, while the central attacking positions are filled by Seamas Prendergast and the 2007 “Hurler Of The Year’’ Dan Shanahan.
“We will be hoping for a good league run, but more than ever the emphasis for us now is on the championship’,’ McCarthy said. “That’s what its really about for us this year’’.
Wexford manager John Meyler introduces one newcomer to his side. John Breen from Monageer, a member of last season’s All-Ireland Intermediate Championship winning side, comes into the senior team at right-half forward.
Meanwhile Kildare have rejected a request from Galway to postpone Sunday week’s NFL tie due to the involvement of two players in the All-Ireland intermediate club final the same day.
Moycullen duo Mark Lydon and Gareth Bradshaw will be on duty against Dublin’s Fingal Ravens in an unfortunate fixture clash but Kildare could not afford to put the game back, according to county chairman Syl Merrins. A rescheduling of the tie would mean that Kildare would have to play three games in a fortnight, while the possibility of the U-21s being in Leinster championship action in on either March 9 or 15 also providing another obstacle to Galway’s request.
B. Cummins; E. Buckley, D. Fanning, P. Curran; E. Corcoran, C. O’Mahony, B. Dunne; J. Ceaser, S. Maher; P. Kerwick, R. O’Dwyer, J. O’Brien; E. Kelly, L. Corbett, P. Bourke.
J. Skehill; D. Joyce, T. og Regan, F. Moore; G. Mahon, J. Lee, A. Carey; F. Healy, K. Hynes; A. Kerins, D. Forde, N. Healy; G. Farragher, I. Tannian, A. Callinan.
C. Hennessy; E. Murphy. D. Prendergast. A. Kearney; B. Phelan. R. Foley. J. Kennedy; M. Walsh. S. O’Sullivan; B. Farrell. S. Prendergast. E. Kelly; S. Walsh. D. Shanahan. S. Casey.
D. Flynn; M. Travers, K. Rossiter, P. Roche; R. Keogh, W. Doran, D. Lyng; M. Jacob, J. O’Connor; J. Breen, E. Quigley, S. Nolan; M. J. Furlong, D. O’Connor, R. Jacob.