Holders Tyrone to face Armagh in Dr McKenna Cup group

Cavan's Eugene Keating battles with Tyrone's Dermot Carlin in this year's McKenna Cup final
Eugene Keating is challenged by Dermot Carlin in this year's Dr McKenna Cup final

Holders Tyrone will face Armagh, Antrim and St Mary's College in their round robin section games in the Dr McKenna Cup in January.

The competition will start on Sunday 4 January with further group games scheduled for 11 and 14 January.

Last year's beaten finalists Cavan have been grouped with Down, Monaghan and UUJ in Section A.

Section B will see this year's beaten All-Ireland finalists Donegal taking on QUB, Fermanagh and Derry.

The competition has been dogged by county v college player wrangles in recent years.

Dr McKenna Cup draw
Section A: UUJ, Down, Cavan, Monaghan
Section B: QUB, Fermanagh, Donegal, Derry
Section C: St Mary's College, Armagh, Antrim, Tyrone

Queen's pulled out of the entire 2013 competition in protest at several of their players being required to represent their counties.

The Ulster Council appointed former Armagh manager Joe Kernan to mediate in the issue last year but UUJ still opted to forfeit their final round robin game against Cavan because of the unavailability of players.

Exams, injuries and students representing their counties were the reasons given by Jordanstown for pulling out of the Breffni Park match.

At that stage, UUJ said that they "looked forward" to returning to the competition in 2015 and they were in Wednesday evening's draw.

The Tyrone v Armagh Section C tussle will be the first meeting between the teams since the Orchard County's surprise All-Ireland qualifier win over the Red Hands in July.

Tyrone defeated Cavan 1-15 to 0-11 in this year's final.

After the section games, the semi-finals are scheduled for 18 January with the final taking place six days later.