Graham Hannigan staked his claim for a long term place in the Dublin panel. Picture: Niall O’Connell

CASTLEKNOCK’S Graham Hannigan emphasised the importance of the early season Dub Stars and O’Byrne Cup games in the coming weeks, describing himself as “in the shop window” for Jim Gavin’s Dublin side.
Hannigan took on something of a defensive playmaker role for the Dub Stars football team as they were beaten 3-13 to 4-9 in a high-scoring annual battle on New Year’s Day, with Gavin watching on.
He told GazetteSport afterwards: “For the Dub Stars, we said in the dressing room ahead of the game that we’re all in the shop window. There are a lot of players on the fringes of the Dublin panel out there.
“We’re looking to give Jim Gavin a bit of a selection headache. We have four or five Castleknock players with Dublin at the moment. People like Tom Shiels could obviously be there as well.
“As a club, we still have to meet up next week and talk about the St Vincent’s defeat. It was a great season but we are disappointed by the club final result.
“We’re looking to win the Dublin title, if not this year then next year. It’s a really young team and we’re looking forward to it.
“Hopefully a few of us can get in to Dublin for the O’Byrne Cup and then the league, and we’ll take things from there.”
Hannigan also confirmed that both himself and Castleknock team mate Shane Boland have already been called up for the O’Byrne Cup, which gets underway with a game against DCU at Parnell Park at 2pm on Sunday.
While Stars panelist Ciaran Kilkenny did not appear over the weekend, Shiels, Boland and goalkeeper Morven Connolly also turned out for Stars, with Hannigan making the biggest impression.
Vincent’s former Dublin star Mossy Quinn had shown the match sharpness that comes with his club’s run to the All-Ireland semi-final to keep the Stars in the game earlier on, netting 3-4, including a couple of instinctive goals that saw him outwit the defense, and on one occasion beat Connolly to a crossed ball where he had no right to do so.
With the Dublin side having held a substantial 2-7 to 1-2 half time lead, the Stars dominated much of the second half, but felll just short of overturning Jim Gavin’s side in a valiant comeback.
The final score of 3-13 to 4-9 in the Dubs favour reflected an open and fast-paced game.

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