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O'Sullivan's on the brink

DUBLIN boss Pat Gilroy has a couple of major selection dilemmas to mull over between now and the announcement of his team to play Cork in Sunday's All-Ireland SFC semi-final in Croke Park.

Gilroy will publicly announce his side to take on the Rebels on lunchtime this Thursday and could yet choose to tinker with his winning formula.

Dublin have fielded the same starting alignment for the past three games but strong speculation in the capital suggests that both Cian O'Sullivan and Paul Flynn are pushing hard for starting spots against Cork.

Both came in at half-time in the five-point defeat of Tyrone on July 31 and made positive contributions in their respective cameos. They have thrust themselves into the mix after impressing on the training pitch in recent weeks.

Against Tyrone, O'Sullivan replaced Barry Cahill, slotting seamlessly into the right-half back role and setting up a key score taken by Bernard Brogan after sending two Tyrone players sprawling with a dummy solo.

The Kilmacud Crokes man started all of Dublin's league games at centre-back and began the championship in the number six jersey before a hamstring injury in the opening moments of the seven-point extra-time defeat of Wexford ruled him out for the remainder of their Leinster campaign and the early part of the qualifiers.

Dublin's managerial think-tank may elect to opt for O'Sullivan's pace on either wing of their defence if they decide to put him straight back into the starting line up.

Flynn started Dublin's first three games of the championship but was subbed at half-time against Tipperary in their first back-door fixture and has failed to regain a starting jersey since then, despite making an impact from the bench in the three subsequent victories over Armagh, Louth and Tyrone.

Flynn's prowess in the air has added an extra option to the Dublin kick-out, though a start would likely mean that either Niall Corkery or captain David Henry drops to the bench.

Gilroy is expected to field the same full-back line for the seventh match in succession while Ross McConnell's impressive form and that of rookie Michael Darragh Macauley will conspire to keep Eamonn Fennell benched for the start at least.

Bar the possible inclusion of Flynn, there is unlikely to be any further change to the Dublin attack, despite strong claims from both Tomás Quinn and Kevin McManamon in recent training matches.