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Dublin: 19 °C Friday 14 August, 2020
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Big blow for Ulster finalists Cavan as star player opts out for 2020

Killian Clarke won’t be available to Mickey Graham as he takes time ‘to look after number one for a change.’

Cavan star Killian Clarke.
Cavan star Killian Clarke.
Image: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

CAVAN HAVE SUFFERED a major blow ahead of the 2020 season after the departure of star defender Killian Clarke from the panel.

The Anglo Celt are reporting that Clarke, who was instrumental in Mickey Graham’s charges run to the Ulster final this summer, has stepped away for 2020.

Former captain and 2017 Irish International Rules player Clarke has been a central part of the side over the past few years, and it was expected he would be again as the county look to end a 23-year wait for the Ulster crown next year.

But the Shercock man told the Anglo Celt’s Sports Editor Paul Fitzpatrick today that he made the decision with the intentions of putting himself first.

“I’ve been involved nine years at this stage,” he said. “It’s a decision I didn’t come to lightly. I want to take a bit of time to myself and evaluate what my life is going to be.

“I heard there were rumours that I had a falling out with management but that’s not the case at all. I just fell out of love with the game a wee bit to be honest. I wasn’t enjoying it.”

The 26-year-added, while not ruling out a return to the set-up in the future:

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“I just want time to concentrate on myself, to look after number one for a change instead of putting football first like I have done for the last eight or nine years.”

The news comes as a double whammy for Graham — who took the reins after a successful spell with Longford club outfit Mullinalaghta last year — as he’ll also be without key forward Dara McVeety for the league at least.

Crosserlough man McVeety is currently travelling.

Cavan open their 2020 National League campaign away to Armagh in what will be an exciting battle following their thrilling Ulster semi-final meetings this summer.

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Emma Duffy

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