GAA Football

Tyrone boss Mickey Harte hails Sigerson winner Conor Meyler

Conor Meyler, captain of St Mary's University Belfast, lifts the Sigerson Cup as his team-mates celebrate after their Sigerson Cup win last weekend

TYRONE boss Mickey Harte has likened Conor Meyler to three-time All-Ireland winner Brian Dooher – and is hoping the newly crowned Sigerson Cup winner will have an injury-free 2017.

The St Enda's Omagh ace was an inspirational presence in the St Mary's side that upset the odds to win Sigerson last weekend.

Hamstring trouble prevented the the 2015 U21 All-Ireland winner from making an impact for the Red Hands last summer.

But already this year the flame-haired wing-forward has shown flashes of his talent in Division One games against Roscommon and Dublin.

Asked about Meyler's abilities, Harte said: “He's a very talented player and a very skilful player. To use an old cliché, he has a wonderful engine and has the running power of Brian Dooher – and that's a nice thing to have in your armoury.

“He's an improving player and he wants to learn to be the best he can be. And he's really going in the right direction.

“He was upset last year with a number of injuries and didn't get a run at it. He's very conscious of that now and he believes he's a lot to offer and I believe that's the case too.”

Harte added: “It's a matter of watching that he doesn't over-tax himself because this has been a hectic few months for him and we need to make sure we don't over-load him just now.”

With Tyrone quartet Meyler, Cathal McShane, Conall McCann and Kieran McGeary bathing in Sigerson glory, Harte will be watchful of their game-time ahead of Sunday's Division One encounter against Cavan.

“We're always very liberal with our players if they've been working hard and doing things we wouldn't put pressure on them,” said the manager.

“They've got to enjoy this [Sigerson] victory because it's a well-earned victory and I believe they'd be sensible enough to enjoy it the right way.”

Tyrone have beaten Roscommon in their Division One opener and they probably should have left Croke Park with another win against their name but were pegged back by Dublin for a share of the spoils.

Last month, Cavan ended their long unbeaten Dr McKenna Cup run in Omagh – but the Red Hands will be looking to turn the tables at Healy Park this weekend.

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