Down fighting fit for Dublin clash

WITH the swine flu scares that rampaged through the Down squad two weeks ago having subsided, the Mourne County are finally able to play the last of the All-Ireland MFC quarter-finals, as they clash against Dublin in Kingspan Breffni Park this afternoon. Manager Mark Turley insists his squad are back to full health.

“They are grand now. Nobody really knows how many were affected. But the advice we got was that we should stay away from training for a few sessions and let things settle,” said Turley.

Down will be looking to make amends for a below-par Ulster final performance against Armagh. Stephen McNamee and Kevin McClorey will be the key defensive operators, while the attacking responsibilities lie with Robert White and Mark Bagnall.

But they face an arduous task. The drawn Leinster final saw Kildare produce a strong bid for glory, but in the replay Dublin stepped up a gear to triumph by 1-15 to 1-10. Daniel Byrne replaces Daithi Ó’Murchu and Sean Swords coming in for Alan Carr. With lethal attackers Gary Sweeney and Paul Hudson, Dublin should advance.

Verdict: Dublin

DUBLIN MF: D Downey; K O’Brien, F Carney, S Swords; E Keogh, J Kelly, G Seaver; C Reddin, D Byrne; F Breathnach, G Sweeney, D Stapleton; P Hudson, C Carr, F Duffy. Subs: C Quill, A Carr, S O’Connor, N O’Dea, M Schutte, D Ó’Murchu, C O’Brien, P Ryan, C Diamond.

DOWN MF: TBC

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