Sligo have played at GAA HQ twice in Marren’s senior inter-county career, but on both occasions he was forced to watch from the sidelines.
In 2007 the Curry sharpshooter sat on the bench as tomorrow’s qualifier opponents, Cork, doled out a six-point defeat to the then Connacht champions. Three years later a three-game ban and subsequent injury meant he missed out on Sligo’s Division 3 final win over Antrim.
But with an All-Ireland quarter-final at Croke Park the prize for the winners of tomorrow’s Tullamore clash with the Rebels, Marren is keen to bag a third qualifier win of the season for himself and his side.
“I was on the bench back in 2007 and I didn’t get on in Croke Park, but we have a good few lads still there who played that day.
“Brian Curran, Brendan Egan, Mark Breheny, David Kelly, Ross Donovan and Charlie Harrison all played so that experience will stand to us.
“Right now we’re only one game from getting back there. Only Garth Brooks took the chance from us to get back there this weekend, but it would be great to get back up there again.
“Being in the last 12 is great and we’re delighted to get that far, but the last eight would be even better. We’re against a Division 1 team but we’ll give them a real shot,” he said.
Marren and his team-mates are hoping Cork’s heavy loss to Kerry in the Munster final will play its part tomorrow too. Conceding 24 points to your arch-rivals might mean the Rebels are brittle, but the Sligo skipper is still taking nothing for granted.
“After their last game they are going to have to come out with a bit of a bite to them.
“If you lie down and let them run at you they are a team that’s capable of putting up a massive score. But if we can hit them early and contain them we have a great chance.
“To be honest no one in the county expects us to win it. But we have nothing to lose. We are just going to go out and give it everything and hopefully if we can hold them for the first half that coming into the second half we can keep it tight with the last 15 minutes in mind.”