Donaghy is ready to rock as Demons host Tralee in basketball opener

Donaghy is ready to rock as Demons host Tralee in basketball opener
Kieran Donaghy of Garvey's Tralee Warriors in action against Jermaine Turner of Pyrobel Killester. Picture: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

KIERAN DONAGHY is on Leeside on Friday night for the start of the basketball season as UCC Demons host Garvey’s Tralee Warriors.

The Kerry outfit were a real force in the SuperLeague last season, landing the Champions Trophy, though they lost their first game of the campaign to Demons.

With ‘Star’ available due to the Kingdom’s loss to Mayo in the All-Ireland semi-final, they’ll be all out for a win in the Mardyke Arena, 8pm.

Donaghy last night called, via an Instagram post, on the Tralee supporters to travel in force.

“Looking forward to traveling to Cork tomorrow night for the start of the Superleague season.

“Hoping to see the Tralee warriors fans in Cork to get to the Mardyke and a big crowd to travel too as we will need it to get a win on one of the toughest venues of all.”

It will be a tough test for Demons, who have Colin O’Reilly back in charge, with the availability of American Lehmon Colbert in doubt.

Colbert, who had previously enjoyed great success with Demons but didn’t feature last season, was due back in Cork this week. A hold-up with a work permit that is still being processed will weaken the prospects of the Cork side getting off to a winning start.

Demons lost Roy Downey, who switched back to Neptune, as well as Ciarán O’Sullivan and Ronan O’Sullivan in the summer and this campaign is sure to test the credentials of the former champions.

The two O’Sullivans, who are cousins, have returned to Ballincollig where they started out, as the Mid Cork club are this year competing in the First Division of the national league for the first time. Ciarán’s brother Adrian is still playing for Demons.

Ballincollig host Donegal LYIT in Ballincollig Community School at 4pm on Saturday, with a big crowd expected for their league opener.

It will be a tough start for Neptune in the Men’s Division 1, as they play two games, a trip to Carlow IT on Saturday before a home game on Sunday against Donegal LYIT. Fr Mathew’s face a tricky opening game away to Portlaoise Panthers.

The women’s leagues will not commence until weekend October 6-8.

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