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Armagh braced for battle

Jonathan Bradley

There is a huge All-Ireland 2B match in store this afternoon when Armagh travel to Dr. Hickey Park for a meeting with Greystones.

Despite losing to fourth-placed Thomond last weekend, Greystones are the nearest challengers to table-topping Nenagh Ormond, whose draw with Navan last time out was the first time they failed to win this season, while Armagh are in third having taken just a point less from their nine games.

Armagh's win over Boyne at the Palace Grounds last week means they come into the game with momentum but head coach Andy Hughes is wary of the threat Greystones pose at home.

Ahead of the contest, he said: "It's a tough place to go and along with Nenagh Ormond they have been setting the pace all season.

"They had a slip up last week and that will mean they are even more up for this game.

"In this league you target your home games so they'll be coming out pretty determined."

And on the tight race for promotion, he added: "There are four or five teams going for three spots so it'll be interesting definitely.

"Some of the teams have to play each other still, and there will be some slip-ups against the weaker sides as well, so we just need to remember that every point is important between now and the end of the season." James McCall returns to the Armagh back-row after an injury while former Ulster and Northampton Saints centre Seamus Mallon has also recovered from the concussion that has kept him out of the side.

Elsewhere, there was much relief as Ards got back to winning ways with a triumph over Skerries and will be buoyed by that result as they travel to face Navan.

The victory lifted Stewart Porter's side into 10th place, while today's opponents, on the back of that impressive draw with Nenagh Ormond, are in 7th.

Instonians welcome DLSP to Shaw's Bridge still occupying the relegation play-off spot. Sitting just one point behind Sligo in 14th place however, they know a win would greatly boost their survival hopes.

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