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Murphy returns to hand Donegal timely boost

Donegal representatives on the DCU team, from left, Martin McElhinney, Michael Boyle, Michael Murphy and Antoin McFadden with the Sigerson Cup following their victory.

BY CHRIS MCNULTY

MICHAEL Murphy made a timely comeback from his recent injury at the weekend to help DCU to glory in the Sigerson Cup.

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Murphy hasn’t featured for Donegal since the turn of the year and went under the knife to correct a groin complaint last month.

The Glenswilly man had been suffering from a groin injury and in his absence Donegal have been struggling.

However, the return of the talismatic captain comes as a major boost to Jim McGuinness ahead of a hectic four-week period for the county, starting this Sunday when they welcome Cork to Ballybofey.

Games against Kerry, Mayo and Dublin come over the following three weekends and that Murphy has overcome his injury problems will be a huge relief to the county management.

Murphy came on for the final 20 minutes and scored a point on Saturday in Galway as DCU reclaimed the Sigerson Cup thanks to a 2-17 to 0-7 win over NUI Maynooth that is the biggest winning margin in the final in over 40 years.

Termon man Michael Boyle was in goal for DCU and kept a clean sheet while Antoin McFadden of St Michael’s also played the full game for the Dublin-based college.

Murphy made his return on Friday as a sub in their semi-final win over UUJ, scoring a free in a 0-17 to 1-5 win. For UUJ, there was Donegal interest with Leo McLoone and Eoin Waide included in their ranks.

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But it was DCU who took the prize on Sigerson weekend again. While the Boyle-McFadden-Murphy trio all played their part, there was no place in the side for Martin McElhinney.

The St Michael’s man was at the centre of a public spat between Jim McGuinness and DCU chief Niall Moyna when he got injured in the warm-up before a challenge game with Donegal – an injury that prevented him lining out for DCU that evening.

Despite Moyna’s insistance at the time that McElhinney was central to his plans, he did not get game time over the weekend, rising suspicion that the St Michael’s star was being ‘punished’ in some way for the events of the last month, given that he has shaken off a recent injury,

Meanwhile, Martin O’Reilly starred for his college, Marino, in the Corn na Mac Leinn final. The MacCumhaills man hit eight points in their 0-11 to 0-7 triumph over Froebel College and he was named the Man of the Match in the final.

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Donegal News is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
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