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Calling the shots

 

By Declan Bogue

BANK OF IRELAND DR MCKENNA CUP FINAL

TYRONE v DONEGAL

(Today, Athletic Grounds, 6.00pm)

Donegal have emerged from three consecutive league losses with a serious amount of credit, their performances and flashes showing that, even if they did go down, a year in Division Two would do no harm to a young team.

Mickey Harte has rolled the dice on team selection, but the strength of the bench indicates they are keen for a seventh consecutive title.

VERDICT: Tyrone

ALLIANZ DIVISION ONE

MONAGHAN v KERRY

(Tomorrow, Inniskeen, 2.30pm)

Without Conor McManus, the chances of a Monaghan victory here look slim.

VERDICT: Kerry

ALLIANZ DIVISION TWO

CAVAN v MEATH

(Tomorrow, Kingspan Breffni, 2.00pm)

Cavan manager Mattie McGleenan may have been happy enough with a postponement last weekend as he has a little more time to blend back in his big guns, such as Gearoid McKiernan, Cian Mackey and Seanie Johnston, but they are coming up against a Meath side with renewed vigour.

VERDICT: Meath

ALLIANZ DIVISION THREE

SLIGO v FERMANAGH

(Tomorrow, Markievicz Park, 2.00pm)

Sligo, managed by Cathal Corey of Tyrone, did just enough in their last day out to burn off a poor Wexford team that appear to be uncomfortable at this level.

They may find that Fermanagh are a little too organised for them .

VERDICT: Fermanagh

ALLIANZ DIVISION THREE

DERRY v OFFALY

(Tomorrow, Celtic Park, 2.00pm)

AFTER last week’s game was called off, the task is no easier for Derry manager Damian McErlain, who also has to go to Brewster Park next week around the same time Slaughtneil are playing in the All-Ireland semi-final against Nemo Rangers.

VERDICT: Derry

ALLIANZ NHL DIVISION 1B

LAOIS v ANTRIM

Today, Portlaoise, 7.30pm)

Good performances against Galway and Dublin are one thing, but Antrim have been targeting this game for points. It should come for them.

Laois have struggled in their opening games and confidence may be low after a thumping from Limerick. 

VERDICT: Antrim

ALLIANZ NHL DIVISION 2B

WICKLOW v DONEGAL

Tomorrow, Aughrim, 1.00pm)

Donegal to continue recent good run of form.

VERDICT: Donegal

ALLIANZ NHL DIVISION 2B

DERRY v MAYO

(Tomorrow, Banagher, 1.00pm)

Derry’s opening performances have been poor, even allowing for the loss of the Slaughtneil contingent. They may have a few on board fo this one but their addition is offset by a number of dropouts over the last fortnight.

VERDICT: Mayo

ALLIANZ NHL DIVISION 2B

DOWN v ARMAGH

(Tomorrow, Ballycran, 2.00pm)

Down manager Marty Mallon took a leaf out of Antrim’s playbook and got DJ Kane in to do the pre-season work for his hurlers, and it is working a treat so far.

VERDICT: Down

ALLIANZ NHL DIVISION 3A

MONAGHAN v TYRONE

(Tomorrow, Inniskeen, 12.30pm)

Two teams that have little between them, Tyrone need to shore up a defence that has become leaky, although their forward line was going well against Louth last time out.

As a curtain raiser to the football match later when Kerry come to town, a home win seems on the cards.

VERDICT: Monaghan

ALLIANZ NHL DIVISION 3B

FERMANAGH v LEITRIM

Tomorrow, Brewster Park, 2.00pm)

Fermanagh may be in transition, but they have seldom struggled to deal with their neighbours, even allowing for Danny Teague’s absence.

VERDICT: Fermanagh

CREGGAN ULSTER U-21 CLUB CHAMPIONSHIP

GAOTH DOBHAIR v LAVEY

(Tomorrow, Creggan, 2.00pm)

All through their county campaign and now into Ulster Gaoth Dobhair have looked one of the most impressive outfits in this competition, and it is hard to see anything but a win for them here.

VERDICT: Gaoth Dobhair

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