Canty and Quirke return for Cork

VETERANS, captain Graham Canty and goalkeeper Alan Quirke, have been drafted into the Cork team as the All-Ireland champions commence their 2011 campaign against Clare on Sunday.

The pair, who make their first competitive starts of the year, are two of four changes to the team that started in the league final win over Dublin last month. Aidan Walsh returns to midfield and Denis O’Sullivan comes into the half-back line along with Canty for the Munster SFC quarter-final in Páirc Uí Chaoimh.

Ballinascarthy man O’Sullivan makes his first championship start after impressing in the comeback win against Dublin.

Canty, who will again captain the side, had mentioned during the week he would be available for selection but didn’t consider himself fully match-fit. He comes in for Paudie Kissane at left wing-back.

Ken O’Halloran, who performed solidly during the league, can count himself a little unlucky to have lost out to Quirke in goals. Pearse O’Neill switches to the forward line, taking the place of Fintan Goold, who onlyreturned to light training last weekend after damaging his Achilles tendon in the league final. John Miskella is also still on the mend after hurting his back in the same game.

Dual player Eoin Cadogan is likely to be named on the bench.

Meanwhile, Kildare manager Kieran McGeeney has given goalkeeper Shane Connolly his championship debut for their Leinster SFC preliminary round game against Wicklow on Sunday. The St Laurence’s man was almost anever-present for the Lilywhites during their Division 2 campaign and is rewarded for the provincial opener in Portlaoise.

John Doyle is named in thefull-forward line alongside Ronan Sweeney and James Kavanagh in the full-forward, although there remain suggestions he will take up a midfield position.

Meanwhile, Fermanagh goalkeeper Chris Breen said there is no extra pressure to perform against Derry onSunday after the upheaval in the camp.

“There’s always pressure in the championship,” he said. “We’re the underdogs and Derry are hot favourites for this game. All we can do is worry about own performance”.

CORK (SF v Clare): A Quirke; R Carey, M Shields, J O’Sullivan; D O’Sullivan, N O’Leary, G Canty; A O’Connor, A Walsh; P Kerrigan, P Kelly, P O’Neill; D Goulding, D O’Connor, C Sheehan.

CLARE (SF v Cork): J Hayes; K Hartnett, B Duggan, L Healy; J Hayes, G Kelly, M McMahon; N Browne, G Brennan; G Kelly, D Tubridy, C O’Connor; R Donnelly, D O’Neill, A Clohessy.

Subs: K Ryan, M Tubridy, G Quinlan, S Brennan, J Dowling, S McNeiles, B Harnett, M Foran, D O’Connor, D Blake, C Ryan.

KILDARE (SF v Wicklow): S Connolly; A MacLochlainn, M Foley, H McGrillen; G White, B Flanagan, E Bolton; D Flynn, H Lynch; M O’Flaherty, E O’Flaherty, P O’Neill; J Doyle, R Sweeney, J Kavanagh.

DUBLIN (SF challenge v Monaghan): S Cluxton; P Brogan, Rory O’Carroll, M Fitzsimons; K Nolan, J McCarthy, P Griffin; D Bastick, MD Macauley; P Flynn, K McManamon, B Cullen; A Brogan, D Connolly, B Brogan.

CORK (JF v Clare): T O’Connor (Douglas); R Buckley (Macroom), E O’Mahony (Macroom), K Harrington (Bantry Blues); S Kiely (Macroom), R O’Sullivan (Kinsale), B Daly (Newmarket); A O’Sullivan (Castletownbere), S O’Sullivan (Dromtarriffe); D O’Donovan (Bishopstown), K O’Driscoll (Tadhg MacCarthaigh), C O’Driscoll (Tadhg MacCarthaigh); M Cronin (Gabriel Rangers), A O’Brien (Kildorrery), C Keane (Newcestown).

Subs: S Murphy (Lyre), E Wiseman (Castletownbere), P Gayer (Castlemagner), AJ O’Connor (Kinsale), H Dockery (Mallow), B Coughlan (Kinsale), M Dilworth (Knocknagree), T Clancy (Fermoy), F O’Shea (Clyda Rovers).

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