Wicklow name starting line-up for league opener against Waterford

John Evans has named six debutants in his Wicklow team for the visit of Waterford in the first game of the Allianz Football League.

Paul Merrigan, Pat Burke and Conor Healy all start in defence. Padraig O’Toole makes his first appearance in midfield, while Gearóid Murphy and Daniel Keane make their first starts in the full-forward line alongside captain Seanie Furlong.

The experienced trio of Ciaran Hyland, Jamie Snell and Dean Healy make up the rest of the defence, while Robert Lambert is in goal.

Kevin Murphy and Theo Smyth make their returns to inter county action with Murphy partnering Rory Finn in midfield while Smyth is joined by Darren Hayden and the aformentioned O’Toole in the half-forward line.

Meanwhile, Waterford will hand starts to two debutants, with Mark Cummins and Shane Ryan playing at left corner-back and half-back respectively.

Tom McGlinchey’s side are captained by Paul Whyte who is named at corner-forward, while the starting 15 shows no players from senior champions Stradbally.

Wicklow will host Waterford at Joule Park in Aughrim on Sunday, with the game throwing in at 2pm.

Wicklow – Robert Lambert (Aughrim); Ciaran Hyland (AGB), Jamie Snell (Rathnew), Paul Merrigan (Rathnew); Pat Burke (Baltinglass), Dean Healy (St. Pat’s), Conor Healy (Donard The Glen); Rory Finn (Kiltegan), Kevin Murphy (Baltinglass); Padraig O’ Toole (Kiltegan), Theo Smyth (Rathnew), Darren Hayden (Éire Óg); Gearóid Murphy (Annacurra), Seanie Furlong (Kiltegan)(c), Daniel Keane (Éire Óg).

Waterford – Stephen Enright; Brian Looby, Thomas O’Gorman, Mark Cummins; James McGrath, Shane Ryan, Aidan Trihy; Tommy Prendergast, Michael Curry; Conor Murray, Gavin Crotty, Dylan Guiry; Jason Curry, Joey Veale, Paul Whyte.

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