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Tally primed for his new role with Galway

 

By John Campbell

It's all happening for St Mary's University College coach Paddy Tally just now.

Not only has his side been drawn to meet Ulster University in an attractive Sigerson Cup first round tie next month, but the Galbally man has just become the latest addition to Kevin Walsh's Galway management team.

Tally, who steered St Mary's to a first Sigerson Cup triumph in 29 years earlier this year, also trained the Tyrone side that won the All-Ireland title for the first time in 2003, and was involved with Down when they reached the All-Ireland final in 2010, only to lose to Cork by a point.

Tally also coached Derry during Brian McIver's reign between 2013 and '15.

He will break new ground by becoming involved with Galway, but in doing so will link up with a side that are already being tipped to reach the All-Ireland quarter-finals next year.

Meanwhile, Donegal side Naomh Colmcille are proving that if a team have implicit faith in themselves, this can become a very potent weapon when the heat is on.

It was a generous ration of self-belief that carried the side to victory over Fermanagh champions Belnaleck in the recent Ulster club junior football championship final and thus set up today's All-Ireland quarter-final mission against Edinburgh side Dunedin Connolly's.

It was a crucial goal from Matthew Crossan that sealed the win over Belnaleck, and he stresses that it was their 'outsiders' ranking that drove the side on.

"Nobody gave us a chance in the junior championship in Donegal and that is what has spurred us on," states Crossan.

"But deep down we know that when we are on our game, nobody will beat us."

Should his words ring true again today, then Naomh Colmcille's unexpected odyssey will take them closer to an even more prestigious trophy.

Skipper Willie Gillespie endorses Crossan's spirit and resilience as his side prepare for the biggest match in their history.

"This is where we want to be. We have gained in confidence and cohesion as we have moved along," insists Gillespie.

The winners of today's tie will meet the strong Cork side Knocknagree in the semi-final on January 21.

Belfast Telegraph

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