Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 25 December 2014

McCurry hails Tyrone's depth of quality

Hot property: Darren McCurry is lighting up the Red Hands attack
Hot property: Darren McCurry is lighting up the Red Hands attack

The hottest forward in Ulster on current form believes that competition for team places can help drive Tyrone towards an Allianz Football League title success.

Darren McCurry's stylish scoring exploits with the Red Hands initially illuminated the Power NI Dr McKenna Cup, in which his side will meet Cavan in the decider tomorrow, and have now been dramatically transferred to the league.

Yet even in posting a superb 2-4 in helping the Red Hands to account for Mayo on Sunday, McCurry is taking "absolutely nothing for granted", as he puts it, in terms of team selection.

McCurry's two sublime goals in particular bore the hallmarks of a player clearly destined to prove a worthy successor to the luminaries who have graced the Tyrone attack over the past two decades.

But the Edendork clubman points to what he feels is a raft of talent still challenging strongly for places in a team the odds on which continue to shorten in terms of their ability to deliver silverware this year.

"Mark Donnelly, Connor McAliskey and Paddy McNeice all came on as substitutes against Mayo and that tells you something of the depth of forward talent we have," insists McCurry.

"Players continue to push each other on and that's maybe one of the reasons why we have been doing so well this year to date.

"But we have to keep challenging ourselves, that's the important thing. I'm taking absolutely nothing for granted in terms of being picked."

And McCurry, far from claiming plaudits for any aspect of Tyrone's forward play, makes it abundantly clear as to just why the players up front are currently thriving.

"The quality of ball coming into us from further out the field is second to none," points out McCurry.

"The boys are working their socks off to get the best possession then can into us in the inside line and it's up to us to make the best of it. Mattie Donnelly and Ronan O'Neill had big games on Sunday, too, as had many other players."

Indeed, Donnelly's exquisite shooting garnered five points which meant that he joined McCurry in registering 2-9 of Tyrone's 2-15 total.

"I won't complain if this kind of good ball keeps coming in. It's a team effort and I am always conscious that the ball has to be won in the first place before it can come anywhere near the full-forward line," concluded McCurry.

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