Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Crossmaglen Rangers rubbish Jamie Clarke rumours

No return: Jamie Clarke is still in the United States

Speculation that Jamie Clarke could make a surprise return to the Crossmaglen Rangers team for Friday night's Armagh championship semi-final against Maghery has been rubbished by club secretary Gerard Rushe.

It had been thought that Clarke might make a return to the ranks now that Rangers show every intention of landing what would be their 17th title in 18 years but he will not be in the starting line-up according to Rushe.

"Jamie is still in the United States as far as we know and he will not be in our management's plans for the game," says the secretary. "Obviously we are glad to have David McKenna back challenging for a starting position and with some younger players coming through strongly we now have additional selection options. While you would love to be dealing from a full hand this is not always possible."

Paul Kernan, James Morgan and Ronan Finnegan will all be absentees for Friday night's game.

Crossmaglen overcame Pearse Og, who were regarded as the biggest threat to their current title ambitions, in their quarter-final tie having received a first round bye.

In the other semi-final on Saturday, St Patrick's will take on Ballymacnab.

Current Armagh skipper Ciaran McKeever is the driving force within the St Patrick's side and was outstanding in their quarter-final win over Sarsfields in which he scored three superb points from play.

Skipper Brian McCone, the Grugan brothers Jack and Rory and Ryan Kennedy will spearhead the Ballymacnab challenge for honours.

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