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Connolly in two-year ban after positive test

By John Campbell

Thomas Connolly, the Monaghan player who tested positive for a banned substance earlier this season, has been suspended for two years.

Connolly, who turned out for his county in the McKenna Cup, failed an out-of-competition drugs test in February, when the banned anabolic steroid Stanozolol was found in his system.

The Irish Sports Council and the GAA issued a joint statement revealing that he has been suspended for two years commencing on March 18.

This is a reduction from the standard suspension of four years because the GAA Anti-Doping Hearings Committee was of the view that the anti-doping rule violation was not intentional.

Meanwhile, Vinney Corey is ear-marked to return to what was once a familiar role for him when he lines out for Monaghan against Fermanagh in Sunday's Ulster Championship semi-final at Kingspan Breffni Park, Cavan (4.00pm).

A cruciate ligament injury sustained by full-back Drew Wylie means that he misses the match - and perhaps the rest of the year - so manager Malachy O'Rourke looks certain to hand Corey the task of policing Fermanagh's scorer-in-chief Sean Quigley.

Fermanagh, too, have worries with Ruairi Corrigan tweaking his hamstring again in an in-house match on Saturday and rated just 50/50 to start while wing-back James McMahon sustained a wrist injury in the quarter-final win over Antrim.

Corrigan, whose brother Tomas looks certain to make the cut, has shown a penchant for snapping up important goals in the team's surge into Division Two this year.

McMahon has made a significant impact but he may not be risked against a Monaghan attack that possesses physical power and pace.

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