Fermanagh take on Lancashire in the opening game in their National Hurling League Division 3B campaign with throw in down for 2.00 pm this Sunday. 
The game does not involve a trip across the Irish sea however as Lancashire will be playing their home games at the Tir Na nÓg venue in Randalstown, Co Antrim. 
For Fermanagh boss Sean Duffy this fact is certainly a positive for the team: “The travelling can be very difficult. There is no doubt about that. Players have to get off work and it is tiring but we don’t have that to worry about this time around so that’s a good thing.”
Fermanagh will enter the league campaign with a number of familiar faces missing with Declan McGarry retiring from inter-county action and Sean Corrigan not in the panel at present. 
Both McGarry and Corrigan were a real threat in attack in recent years while Daniel Teague and Ciaran Corrigan are part of the Fermanagh senior football panel at present and are another two losses that the team will have to absorb;
“We are missing a few fellas to football and we have one or two retirements but we would prefer to talk about the players that we do have. We have some very promising young players and I suppose it is about other players stepping up now and of course we still have a lot of experience too.”
That experience can be seen in the likes of Andrew Breslin, Shea Curran, Francie McBrien, John Duffy and Mark Slevin all having plenty of years under their belts. Coupled with that is the emergence of younger talent in the shape of Barry McPhillips, Dylan Bannon, Ciaran Rafferty and Adam McShea who will all be looking to make an impact. 
According to Duffy the players have been very committed during the pre-season but pointed out that there have been obstacles to a smooth preparation of the league campaign.
“The boys have been working hard but it has been difficult with the weather. There has been a lot of effort put in under Aidan Ormsby (team trainer) but it is hard because we have not got a lot of hurling done on the field but I suppose most teams are going to be in that position,” Duffy explained. 
Looking at the season as a whole Duffy says that the goal remains the same;
“Anytime we are in the Lory Meagher Cup we want to be winning it. That is our aim. But to do that I think we have to have a good league. If you look at the year we won it we had a very good league and we will be looking to do the same this season. So that starts on Sunday and our short-term goal will be to pick up the win and then take it from there.”
The task for Fermanagh hurling is never an easy one and while it may be unfair to say that the team is in transition it is certainly true to say that they are missing some of their star players of previous years. 
Much will depend on how the Ernemen can fire in attack. If they can hit the scores required there is no reason why they cannot give promotion a good push and put themselves in a good place for a tilt at championship glory later in the year.