STRABANE Sigersons joint senior men’s team manager, James O’Reilly is looking forward to seeing his side return, belatedly, to action for what he believes will be an interesting 2020 Tyrone All County League.
Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic and subsequent lockdown, the Tyrone ACL is starting several months later than expected and because of that, they divisions have each been split into two groups.
That means, Strabane will face Eglish, Aghaloo, Aghyaran, Clogher, Gortin, Augher and Beragh in Group 2 of Division Two.
They begin their campaign at home against Beragh later today behind closed doors, hoping to get off to a quick start, which they will need during what is only going to be a seven game campaign but O’Reilly admits they are anticipating an league opener with a difference.
“We’re looking forward to it but with a bit of trepidation because are the players going to be ready for it? It might be a wee bit soon but we’re looking forward to it,” he said.
“It’s going to be strange but it will be good to get back to the normality of playing even though the first week will be behind closed doors with no changing facilities! It’s going to be a weird situation.”
The former Sigersons goalkeeper, who will work alongside Eamon McGowan this term, is relatively happy with the group his side find themselves in but he does retain some concerns over player fitness after what has been a shorter than normal pre-season.
“I think the first couple of weeks, if we can get through them without any hamstring injuries we’ll be doing well if training is anything to go by – we’ve had plenty of aches and pains,” he acknowledged.
“Our group isn’t too bad. I think of the two sides it’s slightly favourable but there are some challenges in there with the Eglish’s of this world, who are probably favourites, Aghyaran, we have a couple of local derbies in there, and Aghaloo away is always a hard game, so it will be interesting.”
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