Fermanagh hurling manager Joe Baldwin has moved to strengthen his squad ahead of the new season as he looks to build on last year's run to the Lory Meagher Cup final.

That trip to Croke Park ended in disappointment as Fermanagh lost out to Louth in the decider but Baldwin will be aiming to go one better this time around after adding a number of players to his pool.

Baldwin has taken advantage of the ruling that allows weaker counties to bring in up to three players from stronger counties with Barney McCauley, Ruairi Bannon and Kevin McGarry having all received clearance to play for the Erne county this season.

McGarry is well known to Fermanagh supporters as a former player for the county but has been playing in Down in recent years while Loughgiel's Barney McCauley is another who will bring vast experience to the set up. Half forward Ruairi Bannon from Loch Mor dal gCais in Antrim is also included.

"We've got Kevin McGarry, who everybody knows, and then Barney McCauley from Loughgiel and both these players will bring vast experience to the squad while Ruairi Bannon from Loch Mor dal gCais is another we have added and we are delighted to have them on board," said Baldwin.

The manager also says that there are a number of other players who have been added to this year's squad.

"Thomas Cleary is back he is in great shape and is a very good hurler while we also have some good young players coming in like Darragh McPhillips and Peter Rafferty who are two very exciting hurlers.

"You also have to bear in mind that last year when we went with the 26 to Croke Park for the Lory Meagher final we didn't have Matty Teague or Declan McGarry on that squad, we didn't have Aaron Magee on that squad and at the minute, in term s of the runs that the boys have been doing, Aaron is absolutely flying.

"That is eight or nine players additional this year so the squad is very, very strong."

And Baldwin states that the players are raring to get going whenever they get the nod to return to the pitch.

"I was hoping that with the way things are we could have been back at the end of the month or the beginning of April but we'll wait and see. What you really want is the boys to be absolutely mad for hurling whenever we get back and they just want to get at it at this stage. We are looking at venues for training at the minute for when we do get back," he commented.