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Aghagallon quartet now in harmony for Antrim debuts

By John Campbell

When Donaghmoyne overcame St Mary's, Aghagallon in the recent Ulster club intermediate football championship semi-final, their manager Paddy Martin was lavish in his praise of the Antrim champions.

"This team is certainly worthy of senior status and they appear to have some extremely talented individual players," declared Martin.

His assessment has now been fully endorsed by Antrim senior football management duo Frank Fitzsimons and Gearoid Adams who have drafted four St Mary's players into their squad for the forthcoming Dr McKenna Cup competition.

Aghagallon's progress in the provincial intermediate series certainly did not go unnoticed by the Saffrons' bosses and it is now expected that Oisin Lenahan, Eunan Walsh, Pat Brannigan and Ruairi McCann will get the chance to show their paces when Antrim confront St Mary's University College, Fermanagh and Monaghan next month.

Indeed, Aghagallon's achievement in reaching the last four of the provincial series is viewed as a significant plus-factor by Frank Fitzsimons.

"We're looking forward to the McKenna Cup. With Gearoid and myself having watched every club championship match that was played in Antrim, we are fully aware of the depth of talent that is available," points out Fitzsimons.

"A lot of them will now get game time during the McKenna Cup."

"It's good to see the advance that St Mary's, Aghagallon have made and obviously their players will get a chance like everyone else."

Fitzsimons is placing a strong emphasis on building a solid squad because of what he sees as a particularly demanding Division Three league campaign.

"Our first game is against Tipperary who reached the All-Ireland semi-finals this year and our second is away to Offaly so you could hardly ask for tougher than that," states Fitzsimons.

Belfast Telegraph

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