Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 July 2014

Antrim in need of a morale boost

Antrim skipper Colin Brady, disappointed with his own performance in the NFL Division Three final defeat by Sligo, has already gone some way towards eradicating the legacy of that setback by firmly shackling the normally productive Conal Keaney in a challenge game against Dublin.

Tonight Brady, who proved an inspirational force in captaining St Gall’s to their Antrim, Ulster and All Ireland Club titles, aims to further bolster his confidence when the Saffrons oppose Meath at Navan (7.30pm).

In common with several other players, Brady is anxious to regain self-respect and collective pride for the important Ulster Championship shoot-out with title-holders Tyrone a fortnight hence.

With Brendan Herron having made a surprisingly quick recovery from the injury he sustained against Sligo, manager Liam Bradley tonight hopes to view the bulk of the players that will face Tyrone.

“Brendan played for his club Lamh Dhearg on Wednesday night against Creggan and obviously we will now have him in action against Tyrone all things being well.

“This match against Meath will give us another chance to tweak things and will help to further sharpen us up,” points out Bradley.

Meanwhile, the indications are that the Down County Board will not take the quest to have Daniel McCartan’s eight-week ban overturned to a higher authority.

The ban was imposed following the player’s dismissal against Armagh in the Division Two final.

McCartan will now miss the match against Donegal on May 30 although should he himself wish to exercise the option to further appeal his suspension, this could influence the county’s course of action.

The ban was initially proposed by the Central Competitions Control Committee but Down brought McCartan’s case in front of the Central Hearings Committee on Tuesday night in Dublin where the his suspension was upheld.

A Down spokesman has now confirmed that while the ban is “highly regrettable” it is unlikely the matter will be taken to the Central Appeals Committee.

“Obviously it is disappointing for us to lose a player of Daniel’s calibre but it’s very important that our whole focus centres on beating Donegal.

“This is a massive match for Down not least because the team is particularly keen to prove themselves in the Championship following their promotion in the National League,” added the spokesman.

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