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Last Updated:  Friday, 7 March, 2003, 08:07 GMT
Gaston takes Irish Cup award
Coleraine defender Paul Gaston has been named player of the round
Paul Gaston scored two goals against Larne in the Irish Cup

Two goals against Larne have earned Coleraine defender Paul Gaston the player of the round award in the Nationwide Irish Cup.

The recognition is a boost for the Coleraine player as he received a four-match ban earlier this week after accumulating 48 penalty points.

Thirty-year-old Gaston was an unlikely hero as the Bannsiders won 2-0 to book a quarter-final place.

Now Coleraine have home advantage against Crusaders and, although league placings suggest they will be strong favourites, Gaston expects a difficult game.

"It should be a tough match but we are desperate to do well in the cup," said Gaston, a loyal Coleraine stalwart now in his 14th year at Ballycastle Road.

"I have played in two semi-finals but never got to the final itself.

"It is the biggest day in local football and if we can get past Crusaders, who knows?

"It could be third time lucky for me."

George O'Boyle has an ankle injury
George O'Boyle: Glenavon fitness doubt

Coleraine, meanwhile, have an injury concern over Stephen Beatty for Saturday's game.

Beatty sustained an ankle strain in Coleraine's league defeat by Linfield last weekend.

Crusaders boss Alan Dornan could be without Alan Murphy who has a back strain while Johnny Shaw is definitely out of the game.

However, the Crues welcome back Norman Kelly after suspension.

Linfield could be without Lee Feeney in their quarter-final at Omagh.

Feeney picked up an Achilles injury in training in midweek.

The Blues also have a concern over Stephen Collier.

Manager David Jeffrey includes Andrew Hunter, Justin McBride, Peter Thompson and Miguel Chines in his 19-man squad.

Ards injuries

Glenavon, meanwhile, will give late fitness tests to George O'Boyle (ankle), Johnny Wright (groin) and John Devine (leg) for the quarter-final at Portadown.

Boss Alfie Wylie is hoping youngsters Kevin Henry and Paul Keenan show no ill-effects after lining out for the Northern Ireland U18s earlier this week.

Ards boss Frankie Parks looks likely to be without Shane Reddish in their quarter-final against Glentoran at Taylor's Avenue.

Mark Magennis is definitely ruled out for Ards.

Peter Lowry and Declan Devin are long term absentees for the Ards.

The Nationwide Irish Cup semi-final draw will be live on BBC's Final Score and Saturday Sportsound just before 1700 GMT

Nationwide Irish Cup quarter-finals Saturday 8 March 2002 (1500 GMT)

Ards v Glentoran
Coleraine v Crusaders
Omagh Town v Linfield
Portadown v Glenavon



SEE ALSO
Ports too good for Omagh youngsters
05 Mar 03 |  Northern Ireland
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06 Mar 03 |  Northern Ireland
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04 Mar 03 |  Northern Ireland

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