Munster derby on the horizon, Dublin and Mayo prepare for double-header - Lidl NFL Round 2 previews

THERE’S an intriguing weekend of Lidl Ladies National Football League action in store – with a Munster derby on the horizon in Division 1.

Cork were stung by Tipperary on home soil last year, and will aim for revenge when they visit Ardfinnan on Sunday (1pm).

Also on Sunday in the top flight (1pm), Westmeath and Galway both need points after losing their opening round fixtures, while there are two Saturday fixtures down for decision.

The action gets underway when Waterford, fresh from victory over Galway, entertain Donegal, who lost out to Mayo in Round 1.

That game has a 12pm start, before TG4 All-Ireland Senior Champions Dublin make the trip to Elvery’s MacHale Park and a clash with Mayo (5pm), a game that is part of a double-header with the men’s teams from both counties.

In Division 2, Armagh and Tyrone will have Facebook LIVE coverage of their fixture in Silverbridge (2pm).

 

1st February 2020

 

Lidl Ladies NFL Division 1 – Round 2

Mayo v Dublin, 5.00pm, Elvery’s MacHale Park, Castlebar, (Gus Chapman, Sligo)

 

Dublin travel to Mayo in need of a win after being held by Tipperary in Round 1.

Mayo, meanwhile, are high on confidence after seeing off the challenge of Donegal in their opening fixture.

These two counties have enjoyed a healthy rivalry in recent times, including a 2017 TG4 All-Ireland Senior Final clash.

Dublin enjoyed victory at Croke Park when they met in the 2019 League, while they were also winners on their last visit to Castlebar two years ago.

There are changes to both teams ahead of this one, with Dublin boss Mick Bohan bringing in Éabha Rutledge and Kate Sullivan for starts.

Mayo manager Peter Leahy has handed call-ups to Saoirse Lally, Dayna Finn, Nicola O’Malley and Roisin Durkin, as the Westerners aim to make it two from two.

 

Mayo (v Dublin): L Brennan; S Lally, D Finn, N O’Malley; K Sullivan, D Caldwell, C Whyte; Clodagh McManamon, S Cafferky; R Durkin, F Doherty, A Duffy; L Cafferky, R Kearns, N Gaughan.

 

Dublin (v Mayo): C Trant; M Byrne, M Ní Scanaill, É Rutledge; L Caffrey, N Collins, L Collins; L Magee, J Dunne; R McDonnell, C Rowe, K Sullivan; S McCaffrey, N Sweeney, O Whyte.

 

Waterford v Donegal, 12.00pm, Fraher Field, Dungarvan, Waterford (Kevin Phelan, Laois)

 

Waterford couldn’t have asked for a better start to life in the top flight.

The Déise would have started as outsiders against last year’s beaten finalists Galway but they made the trip to Corofin a winning one, as the Murray triplets; Emma, Katie and Aoife, all found the net.

Waterford are unchanged as they prepare for their opening home game of the 2020 campaign, while Donegal boss Maxi Curran has brought Amy Boyle Carr into his attack.

Donegal have begun recent campaigns in impressive fashion, but they stumbled against Mayo in Round 1, and Curran will be hoping for a successful trip South.

These sides last met in a do-or-die TG4 Championship group clash last year, when Mayo came out on top.

 

Waterford (v Donegal): R Landers; M Dunford, R Dunphy, R Casey; M Wall, C McGrath, M Ryan; E Murray, C Fennell; R Tobin, A Baumann, A Wall; K Murray, L Devine, A Murray.

 

Donegal (v Waterford): A McColgan; A.M. Logue, E Gallagher, D Foley; N Carr, K Keeney, A Nee; N McLaughlin, E McGinley; A Boyle Carr, G McLaughlin, K Ward; N Gordon, E McCroary, C Sharkey.

 

Lidl Ladies NFL Division 2 – Round 2

Monaghan v Clare, 3.15pm, St Tiernach’s Park, Clones, (Declan Carolan, Down)   

 

Monaghan began life under new boss Ciaran Murphy with a hugely impressive victory over Wexford last weekend, with an impressive tally of 6-23 racked up.

Ellen McCarron helped herself to an incredible individual haul of 3-6 as the Farney girls, who were relegated from the top flight last year, provided evidence that they want an immediate return.

Clare had home advantage for their opening fixture, but conceded 5-8 against Armagh and lost out by 12 points.

 

2nd February 2020

 

Lidl Ladies NFL Division 1 – Round 2

Tipperary v Cork, 1.00pm, Ardfinnan, (Niall McCormack, Laois)   

 

These two counties have been pitted against each other in a TG4 Munster semi-final in May.

Before that, they lock horns in a Lidl NFL fixture that could turn out to be one of the games of the season.

Tipp memorably defeated Cork at Páirc Uí Rinn last year, when Aishling Moloney scored one of the goals of the season with a stunning fisted effort.

Cork will be anxious for revenge and they began their campaign with victory against Westmeath last Saturday, in what was the first ever fixture for the county’s senior team at Páirc Uí Chaoimh.

Moloney scored 1-6 against Dublin as Tipperary claimed a merited draw against Dublin in Ballyboden last Sunday.

Tipp are unchanged as Sarah Leahy, Niamh Cotter and Laura Cleary come into the Cork team.

Cork (v Tipperary): M O’Brien; M Ambrose, R Phelan; S Leahy; L O’Mahony, M Duggan, A Hutchings; M O’Callaghan, H Looney; L Coppinger, N Cotter, L Cleary; Á O’Sullivan, S Noonan, O Finn.

 

Tipperary (v Cork): L Fitzpatrick; E Moore, L Spillane, E Cronin; M Curley, B Condon, S Lambert; L Dillon, C Kennedy; O Winston, E Morrissey, R Daly; A Fennessy, A Moloney, N Hayes.

 

Westmeath v Galway, 1.00pm, St Loman’s, Mullingar (Mel Kenny, Mayo)

 

Galway were Lidl NFL Division 1 and TG4 Senior Championship runners-up last year – and they began 2020 on a losing note against Waterford last weekend.

Manager Tim Rabbitt will demand an immediate response from his players against Westmeath, who have home advantage.

A second consecutive loss for the Lake County would have them deep in relegation trouble already, but manager Sean Finnegan would have taken encouragement from a battling display against Cork.

Rabbitt has handed starts to Leanne Coen, Lynsey Noone, Sarah Conneally for this one, as Westmeath go with an unchanged starting 15.

Galway know that if they’re to repeat last year’s Final appearance, they need to start collecting points, and quickly.

 

Westmeath (v Galway): L McCormack; R Dillon, K McDermott, L Power; F Coyle, F Claffey, A Roche; J Maher, V Carr; A Dolan, L Archibold, L McCartan; T Dillon, S McCormack, J Draper.

 

Galway (v Westmeath): D Gower; C Crowe, N Connolly, L Coen; F Cooney, C Cooney, S Molloy; O Divilly, A Davoren; L Noone, L Hannon, T Leonard; S Conneally, A Trill, R Leonard.

 

Lidl Ladies NFL Division 2 – Round 2        

Armagh v Tyrone, 2.00pm, Silverbridge, (Brendan Rice, Down)

 

Ulster rivals Armagh and Tyrone have the Facebook Live treatment for Sunday’s fixture, with viewers able to watch the action at http://bit.ly/2OvUJ2D

Jerome Quinn will be joined by former Armagh star Sinead McCleary in the commentary box, for a game that will have big consequences in the race for top-two slots.

Armagh began their campaign with an impressive victory in Clare last weekend, as Tyrone lost out by eight points against Meath.

 

Cavan v Meath, 2.00pm, St Mathews Park, Denn, Crosskeys, (Garryowen McMahon, Mayo)

 

Meath gained promotion from Division 3 last year and they could be dark horses in the race for Division 2 honours.

The Royals, who contested the 2019 TG4 All-Ireland Intermediate Final, come up against a Cavan side smarting from a narrow one-point defeat to Kerry in Round 1.

Cavan managed 3-10 on the day but the concession of four goals proved their undoing, as the Kingdom claimed maximum points in Denn.

 

Wexford v Kerry, 1.00pm, St Patricks Park, Enniscorthy, (Jonathan Murphy, Carlow) 

 

This is Kerry’s second season in Division 2 and they’ll want to get back to the top flight as soon as possible.

They were narrow victors away to Cavan last weekend but the battling nature of that performance will have pleased joint-bosses Declan Quill and Darragh Long.

Wexford suffered a big loss at home to Monaghan, and manager Paul Carty will be hoping for better as the Slaneysiders welcome the Kingdom to Enniscorthy.

 

Lidl Ladies NFL Division 3 – Round 2

Down v Fermanagh, 2.00pm, Teconnaught GAC, (Kieran McKeever, Armagh)

 

Down were impressive winners against Longford in Round 1, and they’ll hope to make home advantage count against visitors Fermanagh.

The Erne County gained promotion from Division 4 last year but the step up will be a challenge for them, as Kildare proved last Sunday.

Despite playing at home, Fermanagh couldn’t prevent an eight-point loss to the visiting Lilywhites.

 

Kildare v Sligo, 2.00pm, St.Conleths, Newbridge, (Barry Redmond, Wexford)        

 

Kildare opened their campaign with a very good victory away to Fermanagh – and will hope to make it two wins from two against visitors Sligo.

The Yeats County, who were Division 3 runners-up last year, lost out on the opening weekend against Connacht rivals Roscommon, and they need a quick response.

This is one of the key fixtures in the hunt for a top-two finish, and Kildare will look to make St Conleth’s Park a fortress.

 

Roscommon v Laois, 2.00pm, St Brigids, Kiltoom, (John Devlin, Galway)  

 

Roscommon will fancy their chances of gaining a Division 3 Final slot and they had a perfect start at home to Sligo last weekend.

Laois are another team to keep an eye on and they began with a draw at home to Leinster rivals Wicklow in Round 1.

Every game matters in this year’s League campaign, and the winners of this one will gain a significant boost in the hunt for promotion.

 

Wicklow v Longford, 2.00pm, Blessington GAA, (Paul Burke, Louth)          

 

Wicklow gained a creditable draw against Laois last weekend, and are now preparing for their first home game of the campaign.

Longford need to pick themselves up quickly after they lost out to Down on a 1-7 to 3-8 scoreline in Round 1.

Leinster rivalry will bring some spice to this one, and both sides are in need of the win.

 

Lidl Ladies NFL Division 4 – Round 2

Antrim v Louth, 1.00pm, The Dub (Pitch 13), (Gavin Finnegan, Down)      

Antrim were beaten Division 4 Finalists last year and will hope to get back to another decider.

But they got off to a disappointing start last weekend when Offaly, who dropped down from Division 3, came away from The Dub with a four-point win.

Louth were the odd team out in the Round 1 fixtures, and the 2019 TG4 All-Ireland Junior Champions will hope to kickstart their season with a win.

 

Limerick v Derry, 2.00pm, Fr John Ryan Memorial Park, Stalker Wallace, (Eamonn Moran, Kerry)

 

Limerick were on the road for their opening fixture, and they lost out by just a single point to Carlow.

They’ll hope for better fortunes on home soil and there’s an opportunity against a Derry side smarting from a big loss to Leitrim.

The red-hot Westerners racked up 5-17 at the Owenbeg 4G pitch, as Derry mustered just three points on the day.

 

Offaly v Carlow, 12.00pm, Bord na Mona O’Brien Park, Tullamore, (Austin O’Connell, Galway)

 

Offaly’s pride was dented when they suffered relegation from Division 3 last year.

But they responded with a gritty victory against Antrim last weekend, to build a solid platform for what lies ahead.

Carlow will also quietly fancy themselves to enjoy a positive campaign, and their opening game resulted in a one-point victory over Limerick.

 

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