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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Duke possible for Kelso battleHeadlines
Nicky Richards

Trainer Nicky Richards could let smart novice Duke Of Navan line up in the BetVictor Morebattle Hurdle at Kelso on Thursday.

Richards identified the Dovecote Novices' Hurdle at Kempton as the likely port of call for the five-year-old after his latest win at Kelso a month ago, but is now considering whether to let his charge return to the Borders track next week.

"I was talking to Davy (Russell) about him at Carlisle on Wednesday and we'll give him an entry in the Morebattle Hurdle," said Richards.

"I'm not saying he's good enough to beat those Champion Hurdle horses at the moment, but he's a very smart horse and in very good form.

"The other option is to go down to Kempton for the Dovecote, but he'll no doubt have one or two to beat there anyway and Kelso is much closer to home.

"We'll give him the Morebattle entry and then make a decision from there."

Duke Of Navan is one of 13 entries for the Morebattle, with Nicky Henderson having put in Grandouet, Utopie Des Bordes and the long-absent Khyber Kim.

Christmas Hurdle runner-up Raya Star is also engaged at this stage.

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