1 March 2013 No Comments by The Northern Standard

Donegal 3-18
Monaghan 1-06

IF 2012 was a painful year for the Monaghan hurlers, 2013 could be equally as sore given that they were left all at sea by a rampant Donegal side in a game that turned into a veritable procession in the second half.
This was Joe Morris’s first official outing in charge and it ended in disappointment with an eighteen points mauling at the hands of a ruthless Donegal in Letterkenny.
Following the resignation of Mattie Lennon last April when Monaghan handed Fingal a walkover in the Division 3A final over a fixtures row, hurling in the county was at its lowest ebb for sometime.
On the evidence of this display in Donegal, though, Monaghan’s prospects of repeating their 2012 trick and reaching the final look decidedly slim.
Monaghan won the corresponding game last year by seven points, but here it was Ray Durack’s team who dominated a game that became a procession for them after the first quarter.
If Monaghan have regressed since that opener against Donegal last year then the opposite – on the evidence of Sunday’s League opener anyway – is true of Tir Chonaill.
The young Donegal side has been strengthened by the returns of Danny Cullen, Ciaran Matthewson, Stephen Boyle and Paddy Hannigan this term, and with U21s like Sean McVeigh, Ronan McDermott and Lee Henderson now in their second and third seasons of inter-county hurling, their future does look bright.
Michael McHugh had Monaghan 0-3 to 0-1 up after 15 minutes, but that was as good as …

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