Dolphin Bay won this in 2007 under Nina Carberry from an 11lbs lower mark. John Kiely's charge has run some good races since but hasn't performed over hurdles since November 2008. Eagle's Pass looked like scoring at Punchestown when taking the lead at the last but eventually had to settle for third behind Jigalo and today's rival Alpine Eagle. He has been raised 4lbs and may take his revenge on the runner-up who has gone up 6lbs. Ireland's Call won twice on fast ground last summer and with conditions in his favour a long absence is not too much of a concern. James Lambe placed Skylancer brilliantly to land three novice events in the UK last autumn but the six-year-old faces stiffer competition here and the vote goes to SLIEVEARDAGH, who landed a very competitive novice hurdle at Tramore on New Year's Eve before finding 2m4f stretching his stamina at Leopardstown. Grey Soldier is another to note after unshipping his rider when still there with a chance at Punchestown.
Lethal Weapon (IRE) 16-1 (11-8) Towards rear for much, never a factor, 18th of 25, 28l behind Jigalo (10-5) at Punchestown 2m hcp hdl 0-140 gd in Apr.
Lucky William (IRE) 7-1 (11-5) Tracked leaders on inner, 5th when slipped up approaching 3 out, in a race won by Arvika Ligeonniere (11-12) at Punchestown 2m nov hdl gd in Apr, 23 ran.
Eagle's Pass (IRE) 25-1 (11-1) Rear of mid-division, progress into 6th after 2 out, 3rd into straight, challenged and disputed lead last, soon headed and kept on same pace run-in, 3rd of 25, 1 3/4l behind Jigalo (10-5) at Punchestown 2m hcp hdl 0-140 gd in Apr.
Ireland's Call (IRE) 8-1 (11-7) Towards rear, progress after 3 out, challenged under pressure and on terms 2 out, kept on same pace in 3rd run-in, 3rd of 9, 2 3/4l behind Dani California (11-7) at Tramore 2m hdl gd in Aug.
Schelm (GER) 50-1 (11-12) Always towards rear, behind when fell last, in a race won by Captain Cee Bee (11-12) at Punchestown 2m nov chs G1 gd in Apr, 10 ran.
Grey Soldier (IRE) 7-1 (11-12) Chased leaders, closed from 4 out, in touch when mistake and unseated rider next, in a race won by Blackstairmountain (11-12) at Punchestown 2m nov hdl G2 gd in Apr, 10 ran.
King Rama (USA) 20-1 (10-10) Soon mid-division, brought down approaching 3 out, in a race won by Jigalo (10-5) at Punchestown 2m hcp hdl 0-140 gd in Apr, 25 ran.
Some Slam (IRE) 12-1 (11-12) Keen hold, soon led and clear, reduced lead 4 out, headed when slight mistake 2 out, eased, tailed off, 8th of 10, well behind Blackstairmountain (11-12) at Punchestown 2m nov hdl G2 gd in Apr.
Alpine Eagle (IRE) 7-1fav (10-3) Soon mid-division, headway into 8th after 2 out, switched to outer and ridden into 6th at last where slight mistake, stayed on strongly run-in, just failed, 2nd of 25, 1/2l behind Jigalo (10-5) at Punchestown 2m hcp hdl 0-140 gd in Apr.
Kandari (FR) 9-1 (10-8) Towards rear, mistake 2nd, progress into 13th 4 out, kept on same pace under pressure straight, 8th of 25, 12l behind Jigalo (10-5) at Punchestown 2m hcp hdl 0-140 gd in Apr.
Grangeclare Gold (IRE) 25-1 (9-10) Always towards rear, 13th of 21, 21l behind Dorset Square (9-12) at Punchestown 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-145 gd in Apr.
Dolphin Bay (IRE) 7-1 (11-9) Chased leaders in moderate 3rd, closer 3 out, ridden into 2nd entering straight, no impression leader, kept on same pace, 2nd of 16, 10l behind Mise En Place (9-6) at Punchestown 2m hcp hdl 0-130 hvy in Nov '08.
Maca Rince (IRE) 7-2 (10-8) Tracked leader in 2nd, challenged after 3 out, led approaching 2 out, soon strongly pressed, headed last, kept on under pressure, no chance with winner, 2nd of 7, 2 1/2l behind Knocknabooly (11-2) at Limerick 2m hdl sft in Apr.
Skylancer 7-2 (11-8) Held up, headway 3 out, led last, ridden clear flat, won at Wetherby 2m nh nov hdl (3) gd in Oct beating Palmito (10-12) by 4l, 8 ran.
Slieveardagh (IRE) 6-1 (11-7) Keen early, tracked leaders, 5th halfway, dropped to 8th 3 out, no impression from next, 8th of 22, 20l behind Colbert Station (10-9) at Leopardstown 2m 4f hcp hdl 8Evens23 hvy in Jan.
Lancetto (FR) 10-1 (11-9) Chased leaders, 4th halfway, ridden and weakened before straight, 12th of 17, 34l behind Dul Ar An Ol (9-11) at Fairyhouse 2m Novice Handicap Hurdle (8Evens23) (4yo+) hvy in Apr.
Tribes And Banner (IRE) 33-1 (11-12) Never better than mid-division, 10th of 23, 36l behind Arvika Ligeonniere (11-12) at Punchestown 2m nov hdl gd in Apr.
The Equaliser (NZ) 8-1 (11-4) Chased leaders, 7th halfway, lost place 4 out, ridden in 8th entering straight, 5th 2 out, under pressure in 3rd before last where mistake, no extra and kept on same pace, 3rd of 17, 8l behind Dul Ar An Ol (9-11) at Fairyhouse 2m Novice Handicap Hurdle (8Evens23) (4yo+) hvy in Apr.
Castle Anshan (IRE) 16-1 (11-4) Always prominent, led after 3 out, pushed along entering straight, stayed on well from before last, won at Tipperary 2m hcp hdl 8Evens16 gf in Apr beating Tipper Road (10-1) by 1l, 16 ran.
The Last Stand 25-1 (9-12) Led and clear early, headed 3 out, soon weakened and eased, 23rd of 25, well behind Jigalo (10-5) at Punchestown 2m hcp hdl 0-140 gd in Apr.
Tijuana Dancer (IRE) 6-4fav (11-4) Mid-division, progress into moderate 3rd after 4 out, closed on leader after next, led travelling well entering straight, clear from 2 out, pushed out from last, easily, won at Clonmel 2m mdn hdl (6yo+) in Mar beating Happy Milly (10-13) by 3l, 15 ran.