Westmeath stick with winning formula

Westmeath manager Pat Flanagan has selected an unchanged team for Saturday's Leinster SFC quarter-final clash with defending champions Dublin at Croke Park (throw-in 7pm).

Westmeath stick with winning formula

Westmeath manager Pat Flanagan has selected an unchanged team for Saturday's Leinster SFC quarter-final clash with defending champions Dublin at Croke Park (throw-in 7pm).

Denis Corroon and Ciaran Curley remain out of the starting line-up after losing their places for the 3-15 to 1-10 opening round victory over Carlow a fortnight ago.

Former All-Star Dessie Dolan and team captain Kieran Gavin returned for that game and Flanagan has kept faith with the 15 players who started that day in Mullingar, including goal-scoring wing forwards Kieran Martin (2-0) and James Dolan (1-1).

Dolan lined out at wing back during the midlanders' Allianz League run, but is positioned once again on the forty with Ger Egan listed at top of the right.

Ahead of the Lakesiders' trip to GAA headquarters, full-forward Denis Glennon has praised the influence two-time Paralympic road cycling goal medallist Mark Rohan is having on the current Westmeath set-up.

Rohan was a promising Westmeath Under-21 footballer in 2001 when a serious motorbike accident paralysed him from the chest down. After winning two golds at last year's Paralympics in London, Flanagan invited him to give a talk to the Westmeath senior players and was so impressed that he brought the Ballinahowan native on board as a member of the county's backroom team.

Glennon told the Irish Times: "Mark's been involved the last two weeks particularly, and the passion he's bringing there - you can see the drive in him. He knows what it takes to be successful.

"He's trying to influence everyone including the older players to get the attitude right...that we shouldn't fear anyone and that we need to have a serious belief that we can beat these boys and go out and perform to the best our ability on the day."

The Tyrrellspass sharpshooter added: "When you hear someone like that speaking, you're obviously going to listen. It's mental more so than anything. We have a very good physical coach, but it's the mentality (of winning).

"He tries to instill in us that 80% is mental and 20% is just the physical aspect of the game.

"And you saw a good example at the weekend where Tipperary probably didn't believe they could beat Kerry, they were steamrolled off the field.

"So we can't go out with that attitude that we're going to be steamrolled off the field. We have to have an attitude that we can actually beat Dublin, as daunting as it is. And I think if we do have that attitude, we mightn't be too far away."

WESTMEATH (SFC v Dublin): Gary Connaughton; Mark McCallon, Kieran Gavin (capt), Kevin Maguire; Doron Harte, Paul Sharry, John Gaffey; David Duffy, John Heslin; Kieran Martin, Callum McCormack, James Dolan; Ger Egan, Denis Glennon, Dessie Dolan.

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