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Banbridge duo looking set for Ireland recalls ahead of Olympic qualifier


Owen Magee is set to return to the international fold.
Owen Magee is set to return to the international fold.

By John Flack

Ireland men's coach Mark Tumilty is set to ring the changes ahead of the Olympic qualifier against Canada as he prepares to name his first squad since taking over from Alexander Cox on an interim basis.

The former Banbridge boss is expected to recall two of his former charges in Johnny McKee (22) and Owen Magee (25).

Magee, brother of Ireland's most-capped male player Eugene, didn't feature under Cox while McKee was dealt a cruel blow ahead of the European Championship.

The 22-year-old, who missed out on last year's World Cup, was picked in the squad to face Scotland in two warm-up games in Glasgow but was laid low by a stomach bug and was unable to make the trip and have the opportunity to prove himself.

Pembroke striker Alan Sothern is also tipped for a recall while it's understood that injured Lisnagarvey defender Paul Gleghorne could miss out.

Tumilty, whose selection will mirror his preferred attacking strategy, will name his squad for two internationals against France in Bordeaux on October 1-2 later in the week ahead of the Canada double-header in Vancouver at the end of next month.

Meanwhile, the EY Irish Hockey League continues at the weekend with the top tie the meeting of Banbridge and Three Rock Rovers at Havelock Park.

Lisnagarvey, fresh from a 6-0 opening win over Pembroke, face Annadale in an Ulster derby at Strathearn.

FIXTURES: Tonight: Kirk Cup Pool D: Kilkeel v Lisnagarvey (8pm).

Saturday: EYHL: Annadale v Lisnagarvey (4pm); Banbridge v Three Rock Rovers (2.45pm); Corinthian v Monkstown (1.30pm); Pembroke v Glenanne (2.30pm); UCD v YMCA (2.50pm).

Kirk Cup: Pool A: Raphoe v North Down (2.30pm); Pool B: Bangor v Ballynahinch (2.30pm); Pool C: Antrim v Newry (1pm); Mossley v Cookstown (2.30pm); Pool D: Portadown v Queen's (1pm).

Linden Cup Pool A: Parkview v Saintfield (2.30pm); Portrush v Civil Service (1pm); Pool B: Armagh v CI (1pm); Ballymena v Belfast Harlequins (1pm).

Sunday: EYHL: Glenanne v UCD (3pm).

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