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Evening Echo


UCC get the better of CIT in Fitzgibbon Cup derby

Jackson to start ahead of O’Gara against Scots RONAN O’GARA’S indifferent form over his last two games looks to have cost him his starting place on the Ireland team to face Scotland on Sunday. Declan Kidney named his team at lunchtime today and the number 10 slot will be filled by Ulster’s Paddy Jackson with O’Gara starting on the bench. Word from the Irish camp is that Munster’s Dave Kilcoyne also looks set to start on the bench with Ulster’s Tom Court starting at loosehead, in place of Cian Healy, who is suspended. With Luke Marshall set to start at inside centre in place of the injured Gordon D’Arcy, the feeling was that the Jackson/Marshall combination would be a better defensive unit given the best fit for Ireland, given that they play at provincial level together. Kidney was impressed by the way they


By SEAN McCARTHY complemented each other when they played together against Fiji in Thomond Park in November. Kidney is taking a huge gamble by leaving his former pupil out of his starting line-up in a must-win game for country and coach. A loss would see any hopes Ireland have of winning the championship and with it maybe Kidney’s chances of a contract renewal. Equally as big a call for the coach is the decision to go with Court instead of Kilcoyne. Kidney will start Brian O’Driscoll and Sean O’Brien, who have both recovered from injuries picked up in 12-6 defeat by England. ● See P49 for more rugby.

Gemma to miss season due to Lebanon duties UCC’s William Egan on the charge past CIT’s Daire Lordan during their Fitzgibbon quarter-final clash at the Mardyke yesterday. See P51 for match report. Picture: Dan Linehan

Lay off our hurling stars

Ryan blasts those who send anonymous texts criticising team to radio stations


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LAY OFF our GAA stars.


That was the message from Bob Ryan at last night’s board meeting, as the Cork County Board chairman blasted people who send in text messages to local radio stations slating players and management teams. At the board meeting, Ballinhassig delegate Willie Coleman bemoaned the fact that nameless texts criticising Cork players and management are read out on local radio. Board chairman Bob Ryan agreed, describing the sending of such texts as “a horrible, cowardly act” and saying those who send them should be brave enough to put their names to them. The make-up of the Cork hurling panel has

been a huge talking point in recent months, especially with Seán Óg retiring, and John Gardiner and Donal Óg axed from the panel. The hurling selectors’ judgement has been questioned by some supporters on Leeside and has generated a considerable amount of feedback on local radio. Meanwhile, a complaint last night from James Hubbert (Carbery Rangers) regarding the naming of dummy teams for national league games also drew general agreement. The Cork footballers have rarely started with the same 15 named in the build-up during the Conor Counihan era. ● See P53 for more.

CAMOGIE All-Star Gemma O’Connor will be unavailable to Cork this summer due to army duty in the Lebanon, ZULWHV %$5%$5$ 2u&211(//. The St Finbarr’s half-back departs for the Lebanon in May, and is not returning until November which means she will miss the Barrs and Cork’s entire championship campaign. O’Connor has beeng the county’s best

CAMOGIE player for the past decade. A powerful athlete and hugely driven, she has won five All-Irelands and seven All-Stars. Her departure will be a huge blow to Cork boss Paudie Murray ahead of the opening league game at home to Tipp this weekend. Elsewhere, Cork football keeper Alan Quirke is due to return from the Lebanon next week.

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