Donegal hurlers face Tyrone in O'Donnell Park

Donegal hurlers face Tyrone in O'Donnell Park
Tom Comack sport@donegaldemocrat.com @dgldemocrat

After last weekend’s postponement, Donegal and Tyrone will be anxious to get back out of the blocks this Sunday in O’Donnell Park. (Throw-in 2pm)

The sides were due to meet in Healy Park last Sunday, but that tie fell victim of last Sunday morning’s torrential rain.

The tie was switched to Carrickmore at the 11th hour but the Carrickmore pitch was also deemed unplayable.

So the sides go head to head this weekend in what should have been a back-to-back fixture.

Now they are meeting for the first time this season and Donegal manager Ardal McDermott is anticipating a strong challenge from Tyrone.

“Tyrone are a very good side; their defeat to Monaghan in the first round was a strange result,” said McDermott.

“But they bounced back from that with a big win over Louth. They ran up a big score in that game and have a very good forward line and they will be one of the teams to beat in the league.”

Tyrone defeated Louth by 19 points, on a 5-16 to 0-12 scoreline.

Donegal, after opening with a 12 point win over Louth (2-23 to 0-12), lost last time out away to Monaghan. Monaghan won that game 2-13 to 2-12.

Nicky Rackard All-Star defender Jamesie Donnelly missed the Monaghan game with a calf muscle injury suffered in the Louth game.

But he was named in the team for last weekend’s postponed tie.

Ronan McDermott was also named in last weekend’s team after missing the opening two games.

Both Donnelly and McDermott are included in the team again for this Sunday’s showdown with the Red Hands.

“Jamesie was good to go last Sunday and he will have benefitted from the extra week and along with Ronan, is in the team again for this Sunday,” the manager said.

Donnelly will slot back in at full-back with Aidan Stokes, who deputised for him in the number three shirt, dropping to the bench.

McDermott replaces Kevin Campbell on the edge of the square. This is a must win game for Donegal if they are to get back on track and in the running for promotion at the end of the campaign.

Donegal: Paul Burns; Dara Grant, Jamesie Donnelly, Padraig Doherty, Jack O’Loughlin, Joe Boyle, Niall Cleary, Danny Cullen, Lee Henderson; Enda McDermott, Ritchie Kee, Davin Flynn; Cathal Doherty, Ronan McDermott, Declan Coulter.