Tyrone hit by Niall Morgan injury blow

Tyrone's Sean Cavanagh, left, battles past Monaghan's Dermot Malone during this year's league. Cavanagh has been passed fit to lead Tyrone against Donegal.

Tyrone goalkeeper Niall Morgan has failed to overcome a groin injury and will sit out their Ulster football championship preliminary round clash away to Donegal on Sunday.

The Tyrone custodian picked up the injury in the league clash between the two counties on March 29 at MacCumhail Park. Morgan, a hugely proficient dead-ball specialist, did not feature in the subsequent league encounter against Kerry and his absence this Sunday represents a major blow for manager Mickey Harte.

Mickey O’Neill has been selected between the sticks, Morgan named among the Tyrone substitutes.

Captain Seán Cavanagh has been passed fit to lead the team, the 32-year old recovering from a knee injury which required surgery last month. He will line out at full-forward. Padraig McNulty, named at midfield, is their sole championship debutant.

Corofin’s All-Ireland club-winning hero Michael Lundy returns to the Galway attack for Sunday’s Connacht quarter-final against Leitrim. His inclusion is one of two changes to the Galway team that defeated New York. Brian O’Donoghue gets the nod between the sticks; Tom Healy and Eddie Hoare drop to the bench.

Opponents Leitrim have handed championships debuts to Matthew Murphy, Niall Woods, Thomas Mulvey, James McGrail and Ronan Kennedy.

Offaly football manager Pat Flanagan has kept faith with his Division 4 league-winning team for tomorrow’s Leinster championship opener against Longford. Flanagan has named an unchanged side for the visit of Jack Sheedy’s outfit to O’Connor Park.

The Westmeath team to face Louth on Sunday features four championship debutants. Corner-back Killian Daly, wing-back Paddy Holloway, wing-forward John Stapleton and corner-forward Shane Dempsey are the newcomers in Tom Cribben’s side. Denis Glennon is sidelined through injury.

Meanwhile, Galway hurling boss Anthony Cunningham is confident talisman Joe Canning will be fit for their Leinster championship quarter-final tie against Dublin at Croke Park on May 31. Canning suffered a hand injury during Tuesday evening’s behind closed doors game against Clare.

“It was a nasty cut but it is healing very well and he will be available for the Dublin match,” said Cunningham.

Tyrone (Ulster SFC v Donegal): M O’Neill; A McCrory, R McNamee, C McCarron; R McNabb, J McMahon, P Harte; C Cavanagh, P McNulty; T McCann, M Donnelly, B Tierney; D McCurry, S Cavanagh, C McAliskey.

Galway (Connacht SFC v Leitrim): B O’Donoghue; J Duane, F Hanley, C Sweeney; L Silke, G O’Donnell, S Denvir; F Ó Curraoin, P Conroy; G Sice, S Walsh, M Lundy; P Óg O Griofa, D Comer, D Cummins.

Leitrim (Connacht SFC v Galway): C McCrann; M Murphy, R Gallagher, N Woods; S McWeeney, G Reynolds, T Mulvey; D Sweeney, S Moran; D Beck, D Wrynn, K Conlan; R Kennedy, J McGrail, F Clancy.

Offaly (Leinster SFC v Longford): A Mulhall; B Darby, P McConway, D Brady; N Darby, J Moloney, J O’Connor; G Guilfoyle, N Smith; E Carroll, N McNamee, A Sullivan; B Allen, N Dunne, W Mulhall.

Louth (Leinster SFC v Westmeath): N Gallagher; A Williams, P Reilly, P Rath; D Byrne, D O’Hanlon, A Reid; B Duffy, T Durnin; D Maguire, C Judge, J Stewart; R Burns, C Grimes, P Smith.

Westmeath (Leinster SFC v Louth): D Quinn; J Gilligan, K Maguire, K Daly; P Holloway, K Martin, J Dolan; D Daly, G Egan; P Sharry, R Connellan, J Stapleton; C McCormack, J Heslin, S Dempsey.


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