Cork and Tipp name teams for League opener

Both Cork and Tipperary will field players making their first Allianz Hurling League starts when they meet in tomorrow's Division 1A opener at Páirc Uí Rinn (throw-in 7pm).

Cork and Tipp name teams for League opener

Both Cork and Tipperary will field players making their first Allianz Hurling League starts when they meet in tomorrow's Division 1A opener at Páirc Uí Rinn (throw-in 7pm).

Ballygarvan clubman Stephen White will make his league bow at right half-back, and there are also first starts in the competition for Daniel Kearney (23), Christopher Joyce (21) and Stephen Moylan (25).

White and Joyce, who made his Championship debut against Offaly last July, join William Egan in the Rebels' half-back line.

Sarsfields' Kearney links up with Lorcán McLoughlin in midfield, and Moylan has been positioned at top of the right alongside Luke O'Farrell and former captain Pat Horgan.

Current Cork skipper Patrick Cronin is currently suspended and unavailable for the Tipp game and another sidelined player is Jamie Coughlan, who is facing a ten-week lay-off following a hip operation.

Speaking about the confidence in the panel, defender White told the Irish Examiner: "Being from Cork, every time any of us put on the jersey we all think we are going to win, no matter who we are playing.

"That includes Tipperary on Saturday night because as much as we respect them we also believe in our own ability to overcome them.

"I, as a Corkman, do not believe in fearing any other county and this current group of players has no baggage from the past, either.

“We have had a very decent pre-season and are prepared for the challenge of Tipp and all the others for that matter.

"Every game in the top division of the league is tough but the attitude we, as players, have this year and the attitude the management brings to the panel is that we have the ability and belief to beat absolutely any team."

Meanwhile, John O'Dwyer will make his league debut for Tipperary when they make the trip to Leeside this weekend.

The Killenaule clubman has been selected at left corner forward, joining Shane Bourke and Brian O'Meara in a talented full-forward line.

Tipp manager Eamon O'Shea has paired Johnny Ryan and new captain Shane McGrath together in midfield, with the latter hoping to spearhead a drive for the Premier County's first league title since 2008.

"The management can make it a priority but it's down to the players how much we want it," said McGrath.

"There are a lot of lads on that panel like Paudie Maher who don't have a National League medal and I know they're busting to get one. I'd love to get another one and when you get a good run in the league it can pick up things."

CORK (NHL v Tipperary): Anthony Nash; Shane O'Neill, Stephen McDonnell, Conor O'Sullivan; Stephen White, Christopher Joyce, William Egan; Daniel Kearney, Lorcán McLoughlin; Paudie O'Sullivan, Cian McCarthy, Conor Lehane; Stephen Moylan, Luke O'Farrell, Patrick Horgan.

Subs: Darren McCarthy, Brian Murphy, Kilian Murphy, Mark Ellis, Tom Kenny, Michael Walsh, Rob O'Shea, Seamus Harnedy, Brian Hartnett, Peter O'Brien, Adrian Mannix.

TIPPERARY: Brendan Cummins; Paddy Stapleton, Paul Curran, Conor O'Brien; Donagh Maher, Padraic Maher, Brendan Maher; Shane McGrath, Johnny Ryan; Seamus Callanan, Noel McGrath, Patrick Maher; Shane Bourke, Brian O'Meara, John O'Dwyer.

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