Short turnaround isn’t ideal says Dooher

By Niall Gartland

BRIAN Dooher is mindful of the quick turnaround facing his players before Saturday evening’s Division One league clash at home to Mayo.

Tyrone felt the brunt of a disappointing one-point to defeat to Galway on Sunday, amplifying the significance of their second game against Connacht opposition in successive weekends.

The Red Hands have a number of key players who remain sidelined through injury including mainstays Conor Meyler, Mattie Donnelly and Cathal McShane, albeit Kieran McGeary made his first appearance of the new season last weekend after undergoing a hernia operation.

Saturday’s game could prove itself absolutely pivotal in the race towards Division One survival and joint-manager Dooher insists that they’ll give it everything in their efforts to work their way out of danger, even if the short turn-around is less than ideal.

“It’s a quick turnaround, it’s a five, six-day turnaround, so it’s going to be sore on them. It’s a big ask of the boys, but we’ll recover this week and get ourselves ready for Mayo.

“We have two points next Saturday night to go for, and we’ll fully commit to that cause, and get ready for it and give the best account of ourselves.”

Last Sunday’s game against Galway didn’t go according to plan. Tyrone were in a good position at half-time but a second-half goal from Cathal Sweeney swung the game back in Galway’s favour and the Red Hands ultimately ran out of time. Dooher was pleased with his side’s work-rate, even if the result went the way of the visitors.

“That’s all we can ask for. The boys worked hard to be fair. Maybe the rub of the green didn’t go our way at times, maybe we took the wrong decision at times, and things just didn’t go the way you would like them, but we couldn’t fault the effort by and large.”

The Tyrone management haven’t been shy about giving young lads their chance to show what they can do in this year’s league campaign. Before last Sunday, they’d already handed out seven league debuts. Lorcan McGarrity became the eighth when he was handed a starting berth against Galway, and another newcomer entered the fray late in proceedings when Galbally’s Cormaic Donnelly was brought on shortly before time was called by referee Joe McQuillan. Asked about the number of debutants and the return of Kieran McGeary to the mix, Dooher said:

“I wasn’t counting but it was good to see Kieran back and getting a bit of game-time, but overall it’s frustration and disappointment that we didn’t get something out of the game. We have to dust ourselves down and get ready to go again.”

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