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Zeb to defend Cottage crown

Big Zeb is on course to run at Punchestown later this month before attempting to defend his crown in the Queen Mother Champion Chase at Cheltenham.

County Wexford handler Colm Murphy is training Big Zeb for the Tied Cottage Chase on January 30 which he won 12 months ago en route to glory at the Festival.

The 10-year-old has won both his starts this season, beating old rival Golden Silver in the Fortria Chase and the Dial-A-Bet Chase, and is pleasing Murphy in his work.

"The Tied Cottage is on the cards for him. We're delighted with him, he's very well. He's working well and we couldn't be happier with him," said Murphy.

Murphy may run Quito De La Roque in the Dr PJ Moriarty Novices' Chase at Leopardstown on February 6 after the horse made it two wins from three starts in the space of a month at Naas on Saturday.

"He has an entry in the Moriarty but I'm not sure if it will come too quick for him," Murphy added.

"He hasn't missed a beat since his first run so I think we'll wait another week and make a decision.

"He's come out of his race well, so there's every possibility he will go there."

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