Weekend Club Previews
TODAY Cork SFC semi-finalDuhallow v O’Donovan Rossa, Páirc Uí Rinn, 7.15pm – Divisional side Duhallow with two of Cork’s heavy hitters, the multi-purpose Aidan Walsh and Donncha O’Connor, on board can pull through this evening against the coming Skibbereen club, based on an under-21 winning side.
Kildare SFC semi-final
Athy v Carbury, Newbridge, 5pm – A re-run of last year’s final with champions Athy not quite firing on all of last year’s cylinders but marginally preferred to the Eoghan O’Flaherty-inspired Carbury.
Cork SHC final
Bishopstown v Sarsfields, Páirc Uí Chaoimh, 3.45pm – The key to Bishopstown’s dual success and first hurling final has been the accommodation with the football team, including joint fitness sessions. On the field familiar county names Shane O’Neill and Pa Cronin have been performing well and blended effectively with a younger cohort.
Opponents Sarsfields are haunted by the spectre of under-achievement as they seek to regain the county title last won two years ago. A nice hurling team, including Cork players Daniel Kearney, Cian McCarthy and Conor O’Sullivan and Wexford émigrés Eoin Quigley and Éanna Martin, they should win but need to be careful, as Bishopstown are exactly the sort of team that could take them on an off day.
Limerick SHC final
Adare v Kilmallock, Gaelic Grounds, 3.30 – After a titanic semi-final win over Munster champions Na Piarsaigh, Kilmallock are justifiably favourites to win this against an experienced Adare team with Ger O’Loughlin back in charge after his spell with Clare. Tony Considine is managing Kilmallock for whom Graeme Mulcahy is in hot form having drilled 3-3 past Na Piarsaigh.
Sligo SFC final
Curry v St Mary’s, Markievicz Park, 3.30pm – Curry’s big win in the semi-finals sets them up to complete the clear-out of their semi-final victims Tourlestrane and Eastern Harps who had won the last five titles between them.
Wexford SFC final
Castletown-Liam Mellows v St Anne’s, Rathangan Wexford Park, 3.15pm – The form of Redmond Barry has been central to St Anne’s progress and although Castletown, for whom county goalkeeper Anthony Masterson lines out at centrefield, have been in the last two finals, St Anne’s can take a first title in 11 years.
Kildare SFC semi-final
Sarsfields v St Laurence’s, Newbridge, 2.15pm – Former Kildare player and manager John Crofton has directed a Sarsfields renaissance and they look likely to extend their long-running record against St Laurence’s, who have never beaten them in championship.
Wicklow SFC final
Baltinglass v St Patrick’s, Aughrim, 3.15pm – A tightly balanced final will be largely decided by how effectively Baltinglass can cope with their opponents’ marquee forwards. St Pat’s have the edge in recent experience but the western club can swing this.
Offaly SHC final
Kilcormac-Killoughey v St Rynagh’s, Tullamore, 3.30pm – Kilcormac have lost three finals in the past 10 years and haven’t won the title in over a century and they will be wary going out tomorrow against one of the big club names in the county. Rynagh’s haven’t won the county since 1993 but have youth and momentum now and can cause further angst for their opponents.
Louth SFC final
Dreadnots v St Patrick’s, Drogheda, 3.30pm – Champions St Patrick’s are the hottest of favourites against the Dreadnots from Clogherhead who have been in one final in their entire history. More relevantly St Pat’s won easily when the clubs met in the group stages.
Kildare SHC final
Celbridge v Confey, Newbridge, 4pm – Celbridge had to pedal hard to get past Ardclough in the replayed semi-final and although Confey have every chance of upsetting the cart, the champions can achieve a fourth successive title.
Cavan SFC final replay
Kingscourt Stars v Mullahoran, Kingspan Breffni Park, 4.0 – Down to 14 men, Kingscourt couldn’t quite make an at one stage sizeable lead last the distance and Mullahoran showed clinical calm to take this to a replay. The initiative has been handed to Mullahoran, who can improve sufficiently to take the title.
Tyrone SFC final
Errigal Ciarán v Dromore, Healy Park, 3.30pm – Errigal return to the county final for the first time in six years to take on the familiar presence of Dromore, three times champions in the past five years. Coincidentally both managers Paul McIver and Ronan McGuckin are from the Ballinderry club across the border in south Derry. Dromore have the experience to get the better of their emerging opponents.