Belfast Telegraph

Friday 22 August 2014

Antrim get watching brief as tie is cancelled

Antrim were left kicking their heels yesterday when their important Division Three Allianz Football League tie against Meath was ruled out because Casement Park was unplayable.

But now Frank Dawson's side are facing two matches which will not only impact on their own prospects of remaining in the third tier of the competition but could also influence Monaghan's drive for Division Two status.

Antrim are due to meet Malachy O'Rourke's team on Sunday week and with the Farney side having lost to Roscommon yesterday (0-8 to 0-07) they will be desperately anxious to claim the Saffrons' scalp to keep alive their promotion hopes.

Yesterday's setback came as a surprise and it meant that previously struggling Roscommon completed an Ulster double having beaten Antrim in the last round of fixtures.

With Wicklow already relegated from Division Three, Sligo are also in danger of joining them as they have only three points but although Antrim are marginally better off with four they must win at least one of their last two games to make sure of retaining their slot for next year.

Cavan too are still in with an outside chance of gaining promotion and while Ulster has provided half of the teams in Division Three this year, the hope that this number could be significantly reduced may not be realised given Armagh's perilous position in Division Two following their one-point eclipse by Westmeath who gained promotion to Division One via this victory.

But if Armagh have serious concerns at present, then their former All-Ireland winning defender Justin McNulty can breathe more easily now that his side have copper-fastened their position in Division Two following their 0-9 to 0-6 victory over already-relegated Longford yesterday.

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