Donegal manager Jim McGuinness is anxiously awaiting news this morning on the fitness of centre-forward Michael Hegarty.
The Kilcar man who played a key role in the victory over the Lilywhites was due to undergo a scan on a knee injury in Sligo General Hospital yesterday. Hegarty received a knock to the knee in the course of Saturday night’s game but played on and finished out the game and only became aware of the full extent of the injury the following day. After consultation with team medics it was decided to send him for the scan.
Meanwhile, on the good news front Noamh Conaill’s Leo McLoone has returned to training and may be in the frame for the All-Ireland semi-final at the end of the month. McLoone suffered a fracture to a bone close to the eye socket in the mass brawl at the end of last month’s club championship meeting of Naomh Conaill and Glenswilly, and underwent surgery afterwards in Altnaglevin Hospital in Derry.
Wallace not happy with new hurling league format
Donegal hurling manager Andrew Wallace is up in arms and not happy with a new format for the Allianz National Hurling League which is being proposed for next season.
The new format has not been fully decided upon with three slightly different formats to go before a Central Council meeting of the GAA at the end of the month. Wallace’s gripe is that despite retaining their position in Division 3B of the league Donegal are being relegated by the change to a new Tain League which in effect by and large the old Division Four.
“The leagues were grand the way they were,” said an angry Wallace. “But as I see it the weaker counties are being thrown to the lions as usual. So called weaker counties like Tyrone and Donegal have reserved the right to play a higher standard of league against the likes of Armagh and Mayo, but this means we are back down at the bottom rung again.
“Donegal busted a gut to stay up in this division simply because it offers a higher standard of hurling. Louth must be really happy with it, they got to the final of 3B last year and finished third this year and now they are being rewarded with relegation to the new division. It is all down to money and I don’t care who I upset but the GAA simply don’t care about the weaker counties as they cost them too much money to run.”
The proposed new format is made of five divisions, Division 1 A (Kilkenny, Dublin, Waterford, Tipperary, Galway, Cork), 1B (Wexford, Offaly, Limerick, Clare, Laois, Antrim), 2A (Down, Carlow, Kerry, Westmeath, Wicklow, Derry), 2B (London, Kildare, Meath, Armagh, Mayo, Roscommon) and the Tain League with nine possibly 10 depending on what Cavan do in the bottom division.
Promotion and relegation is by way of play-offs between the top two and the bottom two teams while no provision has been made for promotion from the Tain Division.
Meanwhile Donegal minor hurlers are playing Roscommon this Saturday in the All-Ireland Minor B Hurling championship. The game is Fr Tierney Park, Ballyshannon, throw-in 3pm.
Investigation almost complete
The investigation into the mass brawl that marred the end of last month’s Naomh Conaill and Glenswilly, in Glenties is nearing completion, CCC secretary Ed Byrne confirmed this week.
It is understood that the investigation committee have just one more person they wish to interview, but it is hoped to have it wrapped up by the end of this week or early next week.
Carr helps Ireland to fifth place finish
Jason Carr’s Irish U-16 Men’s squad will meet Denmark today after finishing in fifth position of the European Basketball Championship qualifying round in Macedonia.
Carr from Donegal Town Basketball Club scored eight points in Ireland’s 84-51 loss to Sweden last week, before adding the same total in the 69-36 reversal to Hungary. The 16-year-old then top-scored with 10 as Ireland lost to Switzerland 65-47 and knocked in 20 points in the 71-59 beating against Armenia. On Monday, Ireland celebrated victory after defeating the Slovak Republic 73-50 in their final preliminary game.
The game today tips off at 2pm in Vidoe Podgorec Sport Hall with the winner advancing to play either tournament hosts Macedonia or Cyprus on Saturday.