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In The Irish News on June 10 1997: Crossmaglen's John McEntee main injury doubt for Armagh for Tyrone clash

John McEntee of Armagh is tackled by Shane McDermott in an Ulster Championship clash with Fermanagh

CROSSMAGLEN’S John McEntee appears to be the most significant of a number of injury doubts concerning Armagh for Sunday’s Ulster championship clash with Tyrone.

The midfielder broke a thumb two weeks ago and is only due to get the plaster off the injury today. Joint team-manager Brian Canavan yesterday described McEntee as “very doubtful” for Sunday’s derby.

The Armagh team will be announced on Thursday evening.

“John will be fit enough but it will be a question of whether the broken bone has healed in time. We’ll not know until the plaster is off,” said Brian Canavan yesterday.

McEntee, whose brother Tony is certain to start on Sunday, only returned to football in the last month after being out of the game following the All-Ireland club final victory on St Patrick’s Day.

The centrefielder sustained concussion in the March 17 triumph and was advised by doctors to take a lengthy break from the game.

Armagh’s other main injury worries are John Rafferty (knee), Mark McNeill (ankle) and Neil Smyth (back) all of whom will have had genuine hopes of starting Sunday’s provincial quarter-final.

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COUNTY champions Burren easily defeated Bryansford, 2-14 to 1-8, in a repeat of last year’s Down SFC final at Drumgath last night.

The game was spoiled as a contest early as the eighth minute when Bryansford’s star forward Gareth Bailie was sent off, and thereafter the Newcastle side struggled to contain the champions.

Burren were always in control and controlled midfield through Gavin Murdock and Joe Magee while defenders Kieran Byrne, Ronan McGovern and Garnett McFerran were outstanding in defence.

The star of the Burren attack, indeed the best player on the field, was John ‘Shorty’ Treanor who pulled the strings with Jimmy McAlinden, Padraig Bradley and Tom Fegan finishing off some brilliant scores.

Bryansford, to their credit, tried hard throughout with Kieran McLaughlin, Aidan Shields and Jason Burns outstanding in defence while Simon Poland fought a lone battle at midfield. In a weak attack, only Paul Burns and Declan Murray threatened danger.

Burren: G Walsh, B McKernan, K Byrne, R McGovern, L Magee, G McFerran, B Heany, G Murdock (0-1), J Magee, R Mussen (0-1), J Treanor (0-5), P Bradley (0-2), J McAlinden (1- 2), T Fegan (1-2), A McGivern (0-1)

Subs: C Murdock for R Mussen, A McClorey for J McAlinden.

Bryansford: P McCrickard, D Mussen, K McLaughlin, H Ward, P Boden, A Shields (0- 1), J Burns, D Rice, S Poland (0-1), R Harbinson, G Bailie (0- 1), G McCrickard (0-1), P Burns (0-3), D Murray (1-1), M King.

Subs: P Travers for H Ward, A Carville for M King. Ref: M Cranny (Warrenpo

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DARREN Clarke’s third trip to the US Open did not get off to the best of starts this week. Clarke, third in Europe’s Ryder Cup table, arrived in Washington but his clubs didn’t.

Determined not to waste the extra day that it took for them to arrive, the 28-year-old bought himself a sand wedge and a putter from the Congressional club’s pro shop for just over £100, found somebody of the same shoe size so he could borrow a pair and spent four hours working on his short game.

Clarke knows how vital that it will be.

He missed the halfway cut at both Oakmont three years ago and Oakland Hills last June.

“I’ve got higher expectations this time because I’ve got more experience and know what to expect,” said Clarke, happily reunited with his clubs after his first full practice round yesterday.

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EYE EYE ... Stacey Murdock keeps sight of the ball while on a solo run for St Malachy’s in the Cumann na mBunscoil camogie final against Holy Cross at Casement Park yesterday.

 

A PERSISTENT drizzle did nothing to dampen the enthusiasm on show as the Cumann na mBunscoil hurling and camogie finals were played out at Casement Park yesterday.

Despite obvious levels of enthusiasm, and definite signs of emerging talent, the pitch, with its long grass and greasy surface, led to low scores.

The girls didn’t fare too badly in their camogie match, as the rain didn’t arrive until the closing minutes of the game.

By then however it was too late for the Ardoyne team to get back into a game they were losing by 1-2 to 0-0, to a well-organised St Malachy’s side.

But the boys from the Holy Child primary school in Andersonstown had a tough time getting past their amber and black clad Edmund Rice opponents from the Antrim Road.

With the pitch lines being drawn shorter, the teams fielded smaller and the game cut to 25 minutes a side, there was nothing trivial about this clash as far as the players were concerned.

The Holy Child side started the livelier, their boys taking full charge of the first-half.

The second-half however, saw a more spirited display from Edmund Rice.

Two well-taken scores narrowed the gap to two points.

A re-shuffle of their midfield played a huge role in this resurgence and had there been another five minutes on the clock, they could well have won the game.

But when the final whistle blew, it was Holy Child that were the worthy winners by 1-2 to 0-3.

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