Belfast Telegraph

GAA: Gribben gears up for championship

By John Campbell

DERRY under-21 boss Harry Gribben has finally been able to put together his panel for the forthcoming championship.

DERRY under-21 boss Harry Gribben has finally been able to put together his panel for the forthcoming championship.

Derry start the defence of their Ulster and All Ireland titles with a home date against Monaghan.

Inclement weather had previously forced the postmponement of the final selection.

Earlier this week the shrewd Newbridge club man released his 33-man panel.

But he will now have to play without the left flank of his All Ireland winning defence.

Corner back Michael Kelly from Slaughtneil is studying physiotherapy in England, while Doire Comcille's Emmet McGilloway is studying at a Spanish university.

Still the panel has a formidable look to it. Indeed one can select 15 players who have represented Derry at senior level in the last eight months.

They include captain Johnny McBride, Paul McFlynn, Adrian McGuckian, Enda Muldoon, Gavin Diamond, Paul Diamond, Joe Cassidy, David Hopkins, Gary Doiyle, Adrian Heaney and Fergal Crossan.

The squad will train twice a week as Gribben will again want the critics eat their words.

On his appointment last year a flood of letters hit the press but Harry along with his selectors Brian McGilligan, Danny Quinn, and Eugene Kelly answered in the best possible way by winning the All Ireland.

Two Derry players have been called up by Ulster for Saturday's Railway Cup clash when Ulster take on Connacht.

Surprisingly Gary Coleman gets his first Ulster call, he is selected at left full back.

Henry Downey is centre half and Anthony Tohill is listed in the subs.

Two Dungiven players Joe Broly and Kieran Mckeever would have been automatic choices but for their involvement with the club side preparing for the All Ireland semi-final.

Both Downey and Coleman were highly impressive on Sunday when Derry went under to Ulster in a challenge game by a single point.

Belfast Telegraph

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