It’s a wet, windy and fairly mild Wednesday morning but The Best From the East 2.0 is due to hit this weekend, though weather reports this morning suggest that there’s unlikely to be much in the way of snow this time around. We can, though, expect bracing conditions for the Bank Holiday weekend, up to and including Sunday where we face Tyrone in Round 6 of this year’s National Football League at MacHale Park (throw-in 2pm).
I’ll do the usual checking-out-the-opposition post tomorrow on Tyrone but ahead of that there’s a bit of news on the player availability front. The main news here, contained in a report by Mike Finnerty in this week’s Mayo News (here), is that Paddy Durcan “may be in line to feature” on Sunday.
Paddy limped off with a quad injury late on against Galway and he hasn’t featured for us since then. I probably wasn’t alone in thinking that he might have been one of the late replacements on the day last Sunday but, in the event, he wasn’t even listed in the match-day panel. It looks like he will for the Tyrone game, though whether or not he starts remains an open question.
With the likes of Tom and Seamie now back in harness, Stephen Coen growing in confidence in the half-back line and Caolan Crowe settling in nicely as well in defence, there’s a bit less urgency to get bodies back. Obviously, though, we’d have Paddy in there once again in a heartbeat, especially for what’s certain to be such a tough match.
According to that piece by Mike, Paddy is the only one of the injured brigade with a chance to feature this weekend. Those of you who have listened to this week’s Mayo News football podcast (and, if you haven’t, it’s here) will already have heard Stephen Rochford confirm that Brendan Harrison (hip) is out for the remainder of the League, while Chris Barrett, Evan Regan and Donal Vaughan are almost certainly in the same boat as well.
Keith Higgins will be lining out for the hurlers in their NHL Division 2B final against Down on Sunday so, absent powers of bi-location, that rules him out of the Tyrone game. That hurling decider, by the way, takes place at Breffni Park on Sunday with a 1pm throw-in. According to Mike Finnerty in that piece linked above, Keith might, though, be an option for us against Donegal on Sunday week.
The same piece leads with some news on Cian Hanley, whom Mike says has been training with the senior squad since his return from Australia. Cian is, though, still working on his fitness and there’s no prospect of his being tipped into the fray against either Tyrone or Donegal. He does, however, appear to be in our plans for summer and so could well feature, perhaps prominently, at some stage then.
Finally, and apologies for ending this one on a downer, but I’ve bad news to report on the reffing front for Sunday. Yes, it is. Maurice bloody Deegan. Sigh.