Mark Walsh to take over on Jezki in Morgiana if Barry Geraghty unavailable

Fifth clash between Jezki and Hurricane Fly on the cards as six declarations remain

Mark Walsh has been lined up to ride Jezki in Sunday's Morgiana Hurdle at Punchestown in the event Barry Geraghty is unavailable.

With owner JP McManus’s retained rider Tony McCoy sidelined by injury, Geraghty is the obvious choice to partner the Jessica Harrington-trained six-year-old, having steered him to glory in the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham in March.

However, it emerged on Monday that Geraghty could be required by Nicky Henderson to ride at Cheltenham on Sunday and Walsh, who rides the majority of McManus’s Irish-based horses, will be on board if that is the case.

McManus's racing manager, Frank Berry, said: "Mark will ride him if Barry can't, so we'll see what happens.


A fifth clash with Hurricane Fly remains on the cards after both horses appeared among six remaining contenders for the two-mile contest.

Jezki beat Hurricane Fly at Cheltenham and at Punchestown this spring, but Willie Mullins’s 19-times Grade One winner had Jessica Harrington’s charge behind when winning his fourth Irish Champion Hurdle at Leopardstown and in the Ryanair Hurdle at Christmas.

Hurricane Fly is set to bid for a third successive Morgiana triumph on Sunday.

Colin Bowe’s prolific mare Little King Robin remains a possible runner. Pat Shanahan’s King Of The Picts, the Christy Roche-trained Lethal Weapon and Princess Leya from Mags Mullins’s yard complete the entries.