Wicklow v Kildare, Saturday 11th of May, Dr. Cullen Park, 7 pm
Kildare and Wicklow lock horns on Saturday evening in Netwatch Dr Cullen Park with a 7 pm throw in time.
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Wicklow had an average enough league campaign finishing mid-table in Division 4 finishing with 6 points, they won three games and lost four. John Evans remains in charge and he will be looking for his side to put in a good performance against the Lilywhites. Kildare under Cian O’Neill finished 4th in division 2 with three, three losses and a draw. The sides will meet here for the first time since 2011 when Kildare were winners by 7 points.
Looking at some players on both sides Wicklow will call on players like Dean Healy and Ross O’Brien in defence, Rory Finn is likely to be in midfield once again. In attack, much will rely on the scoring prowess of John McGrath. Conor McGraynor, while Mark Jackson’s free-taking may also prove crucial. Kildare have a very strong team and players like Johnny Byrne, Eoin Doyle, Kevin Feehly and Paddy Brophy will be key.
Last Five Championship Meetings
2011 Kildare 0-12 Wicklow 0-05 (Leinster first round)
2009 Kildare 1-16 Wicklow 2-09 (All Ireland SFC Qualifiers)
2008 Wicklow 0-13 Kildare 0-09 (Leinster first round)
1993 Kildare 2-13 Wicklow 2-11 (Leinster quarter-final)
Kildare have named a full-strength team to play Wicklow
Wicklow – Paul McLoughlin (shoulder), Gearoid Murphy (shoulder), Mark Fitzsimons (broken hand) and Fintan O’Shea (shoulder) are all missing.
Kildare: Mark Donnellan, Mark Dempsey, Mick O’Grady, Dave Hyland, Peter Kelly, Eoin Doyle, Keith Cribbin, Kevin Feehly, Fergal Conway, Dave Slattery, Ben McCormack, Eoghan O’Flaherty, Adam Tyrrell, Paddy Brophy, Jimmy Hyland
Kildare are virtually unbackable at 1/25 to win, Wicklow are priced as massive 9/1 outsiders with the draw at 25/1. I expect Kildare to win and Kildare -9 at 10/11 in the handicap market looks a good bet.