By Michael McMullan
DERRY manager Johnny McGarvey has named an unchanged side for Saturday’s Christy Ring Cup decider against Meath (Croke Park 5pm).
The Oakleafers lost finals to Kerry (2015) and Offaly (2021) and face the Royals who are bidding get their hands on the cup for a third time.
The sides met in the group stages with Meath coming out two-point winners at Owenbeg.
Derry are under the management of Johnny McGarvey who came on board just weeks ahead of the league.
Last season saw Derry promoted back to Division 2A before McGarvey had to rebuild the squad after 18 players stepped away.
Despite a chastening opening to the campaign against Kerry and Offaly, Derry were inches away from a win against Down before being relegated on score difference.
Derry have regrouped in the Christy Ring Cup and are back challenging to make history for the county.
It will be a 50th senior appearance for skipper Cormac O’Doherty who will hope to follow in the footsteps of Jack Cassidy who captained Derry to the All-Ireland u-20 B title last month.
Derry’s only injury concern, Segdae Melaugh, has been listed among the subs and will have great memories of Croke Park after bagging the first goal in the u-20 final win over Roscommon.
Derry: Oisin O’Doherty; Sean Francis Quinn, Mark Craig, Paddy Kelly; Sean Cassidy, Richie Mullan, James Friel; Cormac O’Doherty, Meehaul McGrath; Eamon Conway, Corey O’Reilly, Darragh McGilligan; Sean Kelly, John Mullan, Paul Cleary