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Irish recall Magee for Malaysian trip

 

By Graham Hamilton

Banbridge's Eugene Magee has been brought back into the Ireland squad for the prestigious Sultan Azlan Shah Cup series in Malaysia next month, now that he has recovered from a broken finger.

Ireland's most capped player missed out on the recent Four Nations series in Benalmadena as he had just resumed action after his injury, but is now set to add to his 258 caps.

Ulster supply half of coach Craig Fulton's 18-strong squad for a series in which they will face four of the top eight teams in the world, including No.1 and No.2 Australia and Argentina.

For this trip, Fulton has retained 17 of the 24 that finished runners up to Spain in Benalmadena, with Magee the only addition.

He has had to juggle with his squads as some are unavailable because of commitments with their overseas clubs or unable to take too much time off work.

Among those are the Harte twins, David and Conor, John Jackson, Mitch Darling and Kirk Shimmins.

The Ulstermen included are Jonathan Bell, Paul Gleghorne, Sean Murray, Michael Robson, Matthew Bell, Johnny McKee, Chris Cargo and Peter Caruth, as well as Magee.

The series, from March 3-10, will be staged in Ipoh and Ireland's programme sees them face six games in just eight days.

"This is a fantastic invite and a really important tournament for us in our World Cup build-up," says Fulton.

"The squad selected has a strong blend of youth and experience and we are looking forward to testing ourselves against some of world hockey's top teams."

Meanwhile, last night's rearranged EY Irish Hockey League clash between Banbridge and Lisnagarvey at Havelock Park was postponed due to a frozen pitch.

IRELAND: J Carr, M Ingram, L Cole, J Bell, P Gleghorne, S O'Connor, M Bell, S Loughrey, M Robson, S O'Donoghue, C Cargo, S Murray, E Magee, P Caruth, J Dale, J McKee, A Sothern

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