Healy gets the nod for Wicklow25/05/2012 - 11:42:52
Wicklow will field a team containing just one Championship debutant when they meet Meath at Dr Cullen Park on Sunday (throw-in 3.30pm).
Dean Healy from St Patrick's is the newcomer at this level. He will start at right half-back alongside Stephen Kelly with fellow half-back Michael McLoughlin still hoping to shake off a knee injury.
Kelly has a busy weekend in prospect as the dual player is also set to line out for Wicklow's hurlers in their Christy Ring Cup semi-final against Meath on Saturday afternoon.
The footballers, managed by Harry Murphy and captained by the talismanic Leighton Glynn, come into the Leinster Championship on the back of winning the Allianz League Division 4 title.
They are quietly confident of maintaining that winning form against the Royals despite missing the likes of Paddy Dalton (thumb) and Nick Mernagh (foot).
Key defender Ciaran Hyland told the Wicklow People: "We are looking forward to meeting Meath. It has been a great year for us so far but we don't want it to stop here. We want to push on.
"For now though we're not looking beyond the Meath game. Every game the players are learning more and over the past couple of years it has been a case of everyone bursting the gut for each other.
"There is a great buzz around training at the minute and we hope to do the business on Sunday. But it is going to be very tough. Meath have been in Division 1. They are a Championship team and the Championship always brings out the best in them.
"We will have to be on our best game to beat them. Hopefully we will be. We will go into the match full of confidence and I think we can take them."
WICKLOW (SFC v Meath): John Flynn; Ciaran Hyland, Anthony McLoughlin, Alan Byrne; Dean Healy, Michael McLoughlin, Stephen Kelly; James Stafford, Rory Finn; Leighton Glynn (capt), Daragh O'Sullivan, Darren Hayden; Tony Hannon, Seanie Furlong, John McGrath.
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