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King and Moffatt JFC ‘A’ Semi-Finals Round-Up

 

 

Carlos points the way!

 

Ballinameen 1-18  

Roscommon Gaels 1-11

 

A Dessie Carlos inspired Ballinameen cruised through to the county junior final following an impressive performance against Roscommon Gaels at Elphin.

  Ballinameen were the stronger side in the opening half and they opened up a 0-5 to 0-1 lead. The Gaels improved after that with Enda Lannon in fine form from frees. But Ballinameen got a crucial goal from Finbar McDermott on the stroke of half-time which gave them a 1-10 to 0-6 lead.

  Ballinameen extended the lead to nine before Lannon scored a tremendous goal for the Gaels to give them hope, but three quick points without reply settled Ballinameen and they coasted into the decider.

Scorers - Ballinameen: D Carlos (0-9), J Tansey (0-4), F McDermott (1-0), O Keaveney, A Fallon, L Kelly and M Ward (0-1) each. Roscommon Gaels: E Lannon (1-7), D O’Gara (0-2), P Allen and O Hoare (0-1) each.

 

Replay required!

 

St. Brigid’s 0-10  

Clann na nGael 0-10

 

Ballinamen will have to wait another week before they know who they will be playing in the county junior final this year. This was a hard fought encounter in Kiltoom which saw the neighbours level at 0-6 apiece at half-time.

  There was never much between the sides and Rian McNamara kicked the leveller for Clann after Cian McDonnell’s point looked like it might hand Brigid’s victory. The replay will be this weekend in Kiltoom.

Scorers – St. Brigid’s: J McDonnell (0-5), N Grehan, G O’Hara, B McDonnell, C Quinn and C McDonnell (0-1) each. Clann na nGael: R McNamara (0-5), P McManus (0-2), D Flynn, D Shine, K Bannon (0-1) each.

 

Strokestown quench Fuerty fire

 

 

 

 

 

Hodson Bay Hotel Roscommon SFC quarter-final

Strokestown 1-10

Fuerty 1-8

 

 

When Fuerty look back on their first SFC in many decades they can be justifiably proud of their efforts. However, they will rue the many chances that they missed – especially in the final quarter – in this very tight and tense quarter-final played at Dr. Hyde Park on Sunday.

  Full credit to Strokestown, however. They looked well off the pace at times in the opening half and at one stage they trailed by five points. But with Colin Compton. Paddy Brogan and David Butler to the fore, they reeled in Malachy Gately’s men in the final quarter and kicked five points without reply to sweep past a shell-shocked Fuerty.

  With Niall Kilroy flying, it was Fuerty who looked the stronger side early on. They suffered a severe blow after just eight minutes when county senior panellist Aengus Lyons was forced off with a nasty-looking knee injury. Twelve minutes elapsed before the game’s first score, a point from Niall Kilroy. The same player pointed again soon after. A Cian Murray point and a Gearoid Ennis free helped Fuerty into a 0-4 to 0-2 lead after 24 minutes, with Colin Compton (free) and David Butler on target for Strokestown.

  The game then burst into life with two goals being scored inside a minute. In the 25th minute Fuerty struck. Gearoid Ennis was the provider and Niall Kilroy finished brilliantly, low and into the corner. Strokestown responded, sweeping downfield with great effect as Diarmuid McGann set up Colin Compton for another very smart finish.

  Robbie Fallon and David Butler exchanged points from play before the break to send the teams into the dressing rooms with Fuerty ahead by two, 1-5 to 1-3.

  It looked likely that Fuerty would keep their noses in front as they were always able to match Stokestown score for score in the third quarter. By the 43rd minute, Fuerty led by 1-8 to 1-5. But Nigel Dineen’s ‘Town side stepped up a gear after that and it was a really tense contest in the final quarter. Fuerty didn’t score for the final 20 minutes and that cost them dearly in the end.

  Strokestown sub Cian Corcoran boomed over a point from 40 metres in the 48th minute and when Colin Compton converted two frees it left only a point between the teams as the clock ticked on towards the 60th minute.

  Fuerty were gaining plenty of possession but their scoring power had dried up. In the second minute of injury-time Niall Kilroy was fouled to the right of the posts about 25 metres out. It looked a simple free for a left-footed kicker. Gearoid Ennis decided to assume the responsibility but he sent the ball agonisingly wide. It was a golden opportunity to at least send the game into extra-time. Strokestown swept downfield and sub Gerard Collins kicked a simple score to seal the victory with all the Fuerty defenders caught downfield.

  For Fuerty, this was a desperately disappointing loss. For Strokestown, it’s a great win and now they are in the last four after a campaign that had started poorly for them. They are improving all the time and going into the semi-final against Roscommon Gaels as underdogs will suit them fine.

  For Strokestown, John McHugh, Michael Fallon, Paddy Brogan, David Butler and Colin Compton were excellent. For Fuerty, Niall Kilroy was outstanding once again, while Tom Bannon, Peter Kellehan and Philip Neilan were also very prominent.

 

Strokestown: John McHugh; Conor Kelly, Ruaidhri Molloy, Cathal Brogan; Dylan Owens, Michael Fallon, Kevin Sheil; Paddy Brogan, David Butler (0-2); Tony Lavin, Daniel Rogers (0-1), David Neary; Keith Murphy, Colin Compton (1-4, 3 frees), Diarmuid McGann (0-1,’45).

Subs: Cian Corcoran (0-1) for C Kelly (45), Gerard Collins (0-1) for C Brogan (54), Luke Kelly for Lavin (59).

Fuerty: Joe Fallon; Adam Whyte, Tom Bannon, Cian Murray (0-1); Ben McGahon, Peter Kellehan, Darragh Heavey; Philip Neilan, Brendan Mullen; Aengus Lyons, Eamon Bannon, Niall Kilroy (1-3); Oisin Lyons, Robbie Fallon (0-1), Gearoid Ennis (0-3, 2 frees, ’45).

Subs: Niall Keenan for A Lyons (9), Christy Leahy for R Fallon (43), Joe Brennan for Keenan (b/c 62).

Referee: Pat McTiernan.

 

Roscommon Gaels keep dream alive

 

 

 

 

Hodson Bay Hotel Roscommon SFC quarter-final

Roscommon Gaels 2-13

Elphin 0-11

 

Roscommon Gaels’ quest for a first senior title in 15 years is still on course after this enjoyable quarter-final played in Strokestown on Saturday evening. Liam McNeill’s men faltered a bit during the first half when playing against the strong breeze, but once they got going in the second period they pulled away to win with a bit to spare.

  The town team brought Cian Connolly and Scott Oates home from the Middle East for this match, a move which shows how serious they are about their championship ambitions. It paid off too, as Connolly blasted home their first goal, while Oates was excellent, particularly in the second half as he controlled possession and set up a number of scores.

  The Gaels were 1-2 to 0-1 in front after eight minutes. Mark Healy opened the scoring in the first minute with a point from play and four minutes later they scored their first goal. Tim Lambe (who had an outstanding game) burst forward. His attempt for a point came back off a post and first to react was Cian Connolly, who finished to the net with aplomb.

  A Fintan Cregg free for Elphin, and a similar effort from Brian Kelly (Gaels) saw the gap at four points after 11 minutes. However, that Kelly effort was to be the Gaels’ last score for almost 20 minutes as Elphin came roaring back into the match. Unsurprisingly, Fintan Cregg was at the heart of much of their fine play, Elphin firing over six points without reply. Fintan Cregg (2), Gerry Cregg (2), Austin Kielty and Frankie Cregg were all on the mark. Indeed, it could have been even better for Peter Carney’s men but Frankie Cregg’s goal attempt in the 23rd minute came back off a post. Brian Kelly’s injury-time free gave the Gaels some respite, leaving Elphin 0-7 to 1-3 in front at half-time. However it must be said that the Gaels went in feeling frustrated that a lot of the refereeing decisions went against them in that opening period.

  The town team set about their task impressively in the second half. With Scott Oates directing matters from centre-forward, the inside men Peter Gillooly and Ronan Carolan came alive, producing some superb scores. Early points from Oates and Carolan saw the town team go ahead and they assumed control after that.

  Outstanding points from play from Gillooly (2) and Carolan (2) saw the margin grow to four by the 42nd minute and the Gaels never looked in trouble from then on. Aaron Brady converted a long-range free and Fintan Cregg kicked a couple of fine points, but it was a lost cause at that stage for Elphin. The Gaels capped a commanding second-half display with a great team move which finished with sub Richard Hughes fisting home a goal in injury-time.

  In the end, it was another comfortable win for the Gaels, but much bigger tests lie ahead for them as they bid to bridge a 15-year wait for the Fahey Cup. Liam McNeill and his selectors will be worried about that flat 20 minutes in the first half, but the team’s strength in depth is proving crucial.

  Candidates for man of the match on their side were Paul Gleeson, Tim Lambe, Mark Healy, Peter Gillooly, Scott Oates and Ronan Carolan. For a gallant Elphin, Fintan Cregg was outstanding once again, with Niall Higgins, Gerry Cregg and Frankie Cregg also impressive.

 

Kilbride and Clann ladies back on title trail on Friday night

 

 

 

 

Abbey Hotel Roscommon LGFA Senior Championship Final

 

Kilbride 3-3

 

Clann na ngael 0-12

  

Kilbride and Clann na nGael will have to do it all over again after a pulsating game left nothing between the sides by the final whistle last Saturday evening in Kiltoom. Both sides will take positives from the game, however both management teams will know that there are plenty of areas they can improve on for the replay.

  Clann na nGael started the brighter of the two teams and a well-taken point from Ciara Quinn opened the scoring in the third minute. Kilbride will probably be disappointed with how they started the game, however Tara Taylor did get them off the mark after five minutes of action. Clann dominated possession in the opening quarter but it will be a real frustration for them that they didn’t make use of that dominance, with several wides and dropped shots into the arms of Kilbride ‘keeper Amanda Gavigan. At least Caoimhe Lennon got a point for Clann during this dominant spell of play.

  Kilbride were starting to get to the pitch of the game midway into the first half and after some good build-up play, the ball found its way to the unmarked Eilish Fannon and she made no mistake, hitting a powerful shot past Martina O’Brien.

  Points from Ruth Finlass and Róise Lennon brought the game back level after 20 minutes of action. However, Kilbride were coming more and more into the game at this stage. Fiona Tully put Kilbride back in front with a nicely-taken point before Kilbride hit Clann with another blow. Good play from Siobhan Tully saw her drive into the Clann penalty area and she managed to pick out Sinead Clabby who was left with the easy task of putting the ball into the Clann net from close range. Clann reduced the deficit by two before the end of the half with points from Caoimhe Quinn and Róise Lennon.

  The second half started like the first began – however Clann were able to maintain their dominance for a far greater period in this half. Ruth Finlass opened their second-half account within 20 seconds, and that set the tone for what was to come for the rest of the half. Points from Róise Lennon and Kayleigh Dunning left Clann leading by a point after 35 minutes of play. But as in the first half Clann were wasteful at times and will be disappointed that they didn’t kick on and put the game out of Kilbride’s reach.

  There was a lengthy stoppage of play midway through the second half due to an injury to Clann defender Ellie Hewitt. It took the players a few minutes to get back up to the pace of the game. Two Róise Lennon points left Clann three points up with a couple of minutes of normal time remaining. However, Kilbride showed why they have been champions for the past three years, coming back when they were seemingly out of the game. A high ball was sent in towards Kilbride forward Niamh Shanagher and from a tight angle she manged to get her hand to the ball before Martina O’Brien in the Clann goal to send the ball into the net. There was a tense finish to the game but both sides were only able to add one more point to their tally. Saoirse McManus put Clann ahead but shortly after that a converted Tara Taylor free meant that the sides will have to go to battle again next Friday night in Ballyforan.

 

Kilbride: Amanda Gavigan; Ciara Taylor, Yvonne Creighton, Maire Lohan; Aoife Feely, Rochelle Mullaney, Jennifer Fannon; Eilish Fannon (1-0), Alice Kelly; Siobhan Tully, Tara Taylor (0-2, 1 free), Corina Gormley; Sinead Clabby (1-0), Fiona Tully (0-1), Niamh Shanagher (1-0).

Subs used: Blaithin O’Beirne for Lohan (50), Aisling Hanly for C Taylor (68).

 

Clann na nGael: Martina O’Brien; Ellie Hewitt, Kelley Colgan, Kimberley Finlass; Megan Kelly, Aine Connaughton, Shauna Bannon; Ruth Finlass (0-2), Orla O’Neill; Róise Lennon (0-5, 2 frees), Sinead Farrell, Caoimhe Lennon (0-1); Ciara Quinn (0-2), Danielle Greasley, Kayleigh Dunning (0-1).

Subs used: Saoirse McManus (0-1) for Greasley (36), Emma Kildea for Hewitt (47).

 

Referee: Paul Fahy.

Wides: Kilbride 4 Clann na nGael 7

Player of the Match: Ruth Finlass

                                    (Clann na nGael)

 

Kilglass are crowned

 

 

McNeill’s Foodstore & Catering Roscommon LGFA Intermediate Championship Final

Kilglass Gaels 3-13

St. Ciaran’s 1-16

 

 

An entertaining and enjoyable intermediate decider saw Kilglass Gaels finally take this title last Saturday after they had lost out in the previous two finals. It was an end to end game with plenty of eye-catching scores and quality performances from both teams.

  Rachel Fitzmaurice opened the scoring with a fine point for St. Ciaran’s in the second minute of the game. Natalie McHugh, who would end up with five points, opened Kilglass’ account with an excellent solo score. The first goal of the game came on the 13th minute mark. Mikaela McHugh found herself in space close to goal. She hit a shot that took a deflection off one of the St. Ciaran’s defender’s hands en route to the goal.

  A defiant St. Ciaran’s responded in some style, hitting six unanswered points from Jade McCormack, Rebecca Brennan and four from Laura Fleming, putting them back in the driving seat.

  Kilglass then had a purple patch of their own. Points from Natalie McHugh and Aisling McGuire followed before a mis-hit shot from Nicola Tully deceived Paula Daly and managed to creep under the crossbar to leave Kilglass ahead once more. Ciaran’s responded with a Laura Fleming free, however it was Kilglass who would finish the first-half scoring with two frees from Nicola Tully leaving them two up at the break.

  St. Ciaran’s were soon level once more with two well-taken points from Laura Fleming and Sheena Kilroe. Kilglass came back with two points of their own but then St. Ciaran’s got the stroke of luck that Kilglass had in the first half. A free from Laura Fleming that seemed like it would be a routine point for her in fact ended up in the back of the net, having dropped below the crossbar to give Ciaran’s the goal they needed. The sides exchanged scores soon after through Sheena Kilroe for Ciaran’s and Natalie McHugh for Kilglass. It was Kilglass who at this stage were the stronger of the two teams and a quick-fire goal and a point from midfielder Louise Tully put them two points up heading into the home straight.

  To their credit, Ciaran’s never gave up and two points from Laura Fleming and Sheena Kilroe left the game on a knife-edge going into the closing stages. However, having been this close to glory before, Kilglass used their experience of previous finals and weren’t going to be denied this time. Two points from Natalie McHugh and a free from Nicola Tully sealed the win for Kilglass in what was a great advertisement for Roscommon Ladies Football.

Kilglass Gaels: Majella Cox; Deirdre Kilgannon, Aisling Lennon, Claire McCormack; Sharon Duffy, Emma Compton (0-1), Ciara Summers; Louise Tully (1-1), Rebecca Coyle; Siobhan Nugent, Natalie McHugh (0-5), Mikaela McHugh (1-1); Clodagh Owens, Nicola Tully (1-4, 4 frees), Aisling McGuire (0-1).

Subs used: Kate Lawe for Kilgannon (HT), Ciara Compton for McGuire.

 

St. Ciaran’s: Paula Daly; Caitlin Connolly, Meabh Tiernan, Aoife Beades; Tara Naughton, Shauna Fitzmaurice, Rachel Murray; Honor Ennis, Eala Coyle; Rachel Fitzmaurice (0-1), Rebecca Brennan (0-1), Sheena Kilroe (0-3); Jade McCormack (0-1), Laura Fleming (1-9, 1-5 frees), Chloe Whyte Lennon.

Subs used: Niamh Farrell (0-1) for Kilroe (17), Sheena Kilroe for McCormack (HT), Ciara Carr for Coyle (56).

Referee: Lloyd Kelly.

 

Wides: Kilglass Gaels 9; St Ciaran’s 4

 

Player of the Match: Laura Fleming (St Ciaran’s)

Seamus Duke on sport - September 27th

 

 

 

Club Championships heading for exciting finale

 

After four months during which there was little or no club football, it’s been a frantic, helter-skelter six weeks as the county championships continue week after week in an effort to get the competitions finished. A lot of people I’ve been speaking to over the past few days have expressed surprise that the senior, intermediate and junior semi-finals are on just a week after the quarter-finals. Most of the players involved will have played competitive matches five or six weeks in a row.

  I fully realise that all club players want to be playing football, but to have to play championship games every week – especially when it comes to the last eight and last four – is a bit much. Before any of the fixtures committee get on to me about this situation, I know that the clubs voted for this system, so the fixtures’ personnel’s hands are tied, but the way the championships have been played it looks like we are in a massive rush to get the competitions finished. In a couple of weeks time, it will all be over.

  Having said all of the above, we will have a new name on the Fahey Cup for the first time since 2009. A number of teams have put their hands up to claim that they are the ones who can take the title this year. Padraig Pearses have stuttered a lot in this campaign but they came good against St. Brigid’s last Sunday and are now the bookies’ favourites to lay their hands on their first ever title. Boyle will have something to day about that. They have put up some incredible totals in this championship and I won’t be surprised to see them in the final. Good forwards win football matches and Boyle have three of four who stand out. 

  Roscommon Gaels have been steady as a rock, although they had a bit of a wobble during the first half against Elphin last Saturday. Overall, they have a very strong panel. Strokestown have stolen into the last four almost unnoticed, and will relish their underdog’s tag against the Gaels. I’m really looking forward to these semi-finals.

  In the intermediate championship it looked written in the stars that Tulsk and Castlerea would battle it out for the title, but write off St. Dominic’s and Oran at your peril. I am predicting two close semi-finals.

  In the junior championship, Ballinameen will be playing in the Connacht Club Championship, but they would dearly love to be bringing the cup with them on their travels. Roscommon Gaels, St. Brigid’s and Clann na nGael will have something to say about that.

  With so many matches going on at the same time this year I haven’t been able to go to as many games as I would have liked to, but according to my sources, the Pearses/Brigid’s game in Ballyforan last Sunday was an absolute cracker and one of the best seen at senior level in the county for a number of years. Let’s hope we have more of the same this weekend.

 

Great start for Ireland at Rugby World Cup

Needless to say there are a number of pundits and journalists getting carried away after Ireland’s very impressive 27-3 win against Scotland in the Rugby World Cup last Sunday. It was a top class performance, but Scotland were very poor. But it does look as if Joe Schmidt has geared the training and preparations for the past 12 months for this World Cup and the aim now will be for the team to peak in time for a quarter-final on October 20th. Ireland should be good enough to beat Japan on Saturday and to be able to deal with Russia and Samoa as well.

  The only dark cloud on the horizon (for other teams) is the form of both New Zealand and South Africa who played each other last weekend. It was a fantastic game and both sides look a cut above the rest. It’s early days yet though.

  It was great to see Jack Carty come on after only 58 minutes and play such a big part in Ireland’s win. He looked assured and confident. He has really matured as a player. Great to see a Rossie in the World Cup!

Top two untouchable, but Manchester Reds off colour

With all that has been happening in GAA and elsewhere over the past couple of months, the soccer season has slipped down the list in terms of column inches, but I’ve been keeping an eye. In the Premier League, Manchester City and Liverpool are way out ahead of the field already and there are less than 10 games played.

  Liverpool may have been beaten last week in Europe but they won’t get too worried about that as they suffered a similar fate last season and still came back to win the Champions League. City blitzed Watford (8-0) last Saturday and one newspaper report claimed that Watford were lucky it wasn’t 15!

  As for Manchester United, their descent into mid-table mediocrity has continued this season. They were well beaten by West Ham last weekend and the comment that stood out for me after the game was when one pundit said “West Ham had better football players than United” – simple as that.

  United have a collection of very average players who cannot compete at the very top level. Remember that it has taken Liverpool almost 30 years to return to the top after their period of dominance in the ‘70s and ‘80s. It could take United as long, which is a depressing prospect for those of us who follow the club. It’s six years and counting now.

  Closer to home it’s hats off to Dundalk on winning their fifth League of Ireland Premier Division title in six years on Monday night. The so-called experts claimed that when Stephen Kenny left the club they wouldn’t be such a force as they had been. Vinny Perth has taken over quietly and has delivered the goods again.

All-Star nominations for Rossies?

The All-Star nominations will be released in the next few days and I am expecting that Roscommon will get two and maybe three nominations this year. Conor Cox and Niall Daly certainly deserve to be nominated and Enda Smith might get one too. I am not expecting any Roscommon player to get on to the actual team, but as ever, will be interesting to see who the selectors opt for.

 

Lowry on course for more glory?

 

The BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth was a super tournament and the switch from May to September seems to have paid off. The quality of the field was top class and there was some great play. Both Rory McIlroy and Shane Lowry finished with two great rounds and it is great to see Lowry back in contention after all the excitement earlier in the summer.

  Last week the Clara man was made an honorary life member of the European Tour, arising from his Open win, and he currently leads The Race to Dubai standings. What a year it would be for Shane if he were to win that as well. The Irish Sports Personality of the Year in waiting.

 

Pat Smullen fundraiser

 

The link between sport and good causes has always been strong and the recent ‘Pat Smullen Champions Race for Cancer’ at The Curragh has now raised in excess of €2.5 million for cancer research, which is a staggering amount. It’s also a testament to the status of the Co. Offaly man who is suffering from pancreatic cancer at the moment.

  During the course of my radio work I have had occasion to interview Pat many times. He is a thorough gentleman. He will be so proud that this venture has been such a success.

Gaels and Pearses can make final

 

 

 

 

 

Hodson Bay Hotel Roscommon SFC Semi-Finals on Sunday at Dr Hyde Park

 

Roscommon Gaels v Strokestown at 1 pm

Form line

Roscommon Gaels are unbeaten so far and have gone about their business quietly and efficiently, without being spectacular. The Gaels’ corner-forwards Peter Gillooly and Ronan Carolan are capable of getting the match-winning scores.

  Strokestown have stolen into the last four almost unnoticed and go into the match as underdogs, which will suit them fine. I’ve seen them play four times in this year’s championship and they have improved with every outing under wily manager Nigel Dineen. David Butler and Paddy Brogan are playing well in the middle of the field. Colin Compton has been outstanding up front, and if Strokestown are to win they will need Diarmuid McGann and Keith Murphy to step up to the plate as well. I assume that the Gaels will detail John McManus to mark Colin Compton.

The verdict

Given their panel, the Gaels look the stronger. It remains to be seen whether or not Scott Oates and Cian Connolly will be able to return from the Middle East again this weekend. In any event, they have Richard Hughes back in action and Mark Nally has returned from abroad too. Strokestown will have to restrict the supply to corner-forwards Carolan and Gillooly if they are to keep the Gaels at bay. If the Gaels maintain their solid form, it should be enough to get them through.

Prediction: Roscommon Gaels.

Boyle v Padraig Pearses at 2.45 pm

Form line

Mouth-watering is the cliché that immediately comes to mind. Long before a ball was kicked in this championship Pearses were the choice of many people to go on this year and finally break their duck and win the Fahey Cup for the first time in their history. However, Pat Flanagan’s men stuttered over the first few hurdles, doing just enough to win, and in fact they lost by a point to Clann. Still, they finally showed what they can do in a confidence-boosting win against St. Brigid’s. Conor Daly will be back from suspension. Readers won’t need to be reminded about the ability of the Dalys, Davy Murray and Shane Carty in the Pearses’ defence. There was a question mark over their attack, but Hubert Darcy, Paul Carey and Conor Payne were all excellent against Brigid’s and are coming into form at just the right time.

  Boyle have been the most exciting team to watch in this year’s championship. Donie Smith stunned everyone with his 1-15 haul against Clann, but he has arguably been outshone by Cian McKeon in recent weeks. Enda Smith is in outstanding form too and very hard to stop when in full flight. Further back, Seanie Purcell is leading by example at centre half-back while Evan McGrath and Tadhg McKenna are also doing very well. Boyle will be brimming with confidence.

The verdict

Pearses are the only team to have been able to in any way restrict Boyle’s lethal attack in this championship (earlier in the campaign). Conor Daly’s return is a huge boost to Pearses. Niall Daly has been leading from the front for club and county all year. In attack, Paul Carey is a super young player, but are they overly reliant on him? Hubert Darcy, Ronan Daly and Conor Payne will have to deliver if Pearses are to win.

  Boyle will arguably need the performance of their lives to win. Seanie Purcell, Enda Smith, Donie Smith and Cian McKeon will have to match their recent form to give Boyle a chance. I am tempted to go for a Boyle win, but I expect that Pearses will be able to restrict the Boyle attacking threat sufficiently. They get a hesitant nod.

Prediction: Padraig Pearses.

 

 

Mulryan Contruction IFC Semi-Finals on Sunday at Orchard Park, Elphin

Castlerea St Kevin’s v Oran at 3.45 pm

Castlerea stuttered badly against Kilbride last Sunday. If they had all their best players, particularly Thomas Fetherston and Gearoid Keenan, I would be tipping Billy Donnellan’s men here, but those two are huge losses and they have other injury problems as well. Neil Collins is back for Castlerea and that’s a big boost to David Casey’s men. Collins, Darren McDermott, Eoghan Collins and Ronan Raftery will be hoping to lead their young side into the final. Oran will be depending on the likes of Ciaran Lawless, Darragh Walsh, the Caseys and James Fitzpatrick, but Castlerea should have enough.

Prediction: Castlerea St Kevin’s.

 

Tulsk v St Dominic’s at 5.30 pm

Tulsk have been really impressive thus far and will be strongly fancied here. However, I will be very slow to write off Dominic’s again after last weekend’s excellent display against Shannon Gaels. Dominic’s will look forward to facing Tulsk in a game in which Gerry Lohan’s men will start as hot favourites.

  St. Dominic’s have some mighty performers but Tulsk have been operating at a different level this year, producing some very good displays. I am expecting Dominic’s to make life uncomfortable for them, but Tulsk should make it to the final.

Prediction: Tulsk.

 

King & Moffatt Roscommon Junior Football Semi-Finals

 

Roscommon Gaels face Ballinameen in Castlerea on Sunday at 5.30 pm. It promises to be a hard-fought encounter, with Ballinameen tipped to win  narrowly after a scare against Western Gaels last weekend. Later on Sunday (at 8 pm) St. Brigid’s should have too much firepower against neighbours Clann na nGael at Ballyforan.

 

Hodson Bay Hotel SFC relegation play-off

 

St. Faithleach’s face St. Croan’s in the SFC relegation play-off in Strokestown on Saturday at 5.30 pm. Faithleach’s have been hit by an injury to Ciaran Murtagh and Diarmuid Murtagh is suspended. It could be a very tight game – don’t rule out a draw.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Replay on Friday….is it advantage Clann now?

 

 

Abbey Hotel Roscommon LGFA Senior Championship Final

Replay: Kilbride v Clann na nGael on Friday in Ballyforan at 8.30 pm

 

 

Clann were probably the more frustrated of the two teams last weekend, but Kilbride battled the way great champions do and despite being below par they found a way to secure the draw.

  That said, the initiative may well have swung the way of Clann now. They know that they have the measure of Kilbride and they will be determined to finish the job. Ruth Finlass, Megan Kelly, Kelley Colgan, Róise Lennon and Kayleigh Dunning will be hoping to match or better their performances from last Saturday.

  Kilbride showed that experience counts for so much in club football in the drawn game. Niamh Shanager, Rochelle Mullaney, Siobhan Tully, Tara Taylor, Sinead Clabby and Fiona Tully will be hoping to lead from the front on Friday night.

  I went for Kilbride to win the match last weekend on the basis of their firepower and experience, but now I’m not so sure. Clann look a very hungry side and they desperately want to win this title. I’m going to flip and predict that the Johnstown girls will be a point or two ahead when the final whistle blows.

 

Prediction: Clann na nGael

Castlerea win high-scoring thriller

 

 

Ladies Junior A FC Final

Castlerea St. Kevin’s 4-12

Michael Glavey’s 2-11

 

Castlerea St. Kevin’s outscored their opponents by 4-6 to 1-5 in the second half to seal victory in the Ladies Junior A Championship final.

  It was Michael Glavey’s who led by 1-6 to 0-6 at half-time – after a Sheila Brady goal – but Castlerea found their shooting boots in the second half.

  Substitute Holly Hopkins found the net upon the resumption for Castlerea St. Kevin’s before Brady responded with a goal for Michael Glavey’s. Reece Higgins replied with a goal for Castlerea St. Kevin’s. Abi Flanagan found the net for Castlerea side before Claire Raftery’s point attempt found its way to the net to seal the win for Castlerea St. Kevin’s.

  Sheila Brady struck 2-9 for Michael Glavey’s in a heroic display. Meanwhile, Irish amateur boxer Lisa O’Rourke starred in the middle of the field for the victors as she helped her side deliver the knockout blows in the second half.

 

Scorers

 

Castlerea St. Kevin’s: R Ryan (0-4, one free); A Hanmore (0-4); C Raftery (1-0); A Flanagan (1-0), H Hopkins (1-0); R Higgins (1-0); K Hannelly (0-3); L O’Rourke (0-1).

Michael Glavey’s: S Brady (2-9, 1-0 penalty, 5 frees); J Cregg (0-2).

 

Clann aiming to stop Kilbride’s four-in-a-row!

 

 

Abbey Hotel Roscommon Ladies SFC Final

Kilbride v Clann na nGael on Saturday in Kiltoom at 4.45 pm

 

 

It’s the clash of the great rivals Clann and Kilbride in the county senior final once again this year and with Kilbride going for four titles in a row, Clann will be hoping to stop them.

  Kilbride have ruled the roost in Roscommon club football over the past few years but the evidence is that the gap is closing and Clann will come with a real chance on Saturday. They know that they have the measure of Kilbride after beating them in the league final earlier in the year.

  Ollie Lennon’s side has loads of experience and with the likes of Tara Taylor, Rochelle Mullaney, Siobhan Tully, Sinead Clabby, and Alice Kelly on board it is hard to look beyond the champions. But Clann have very competent performers in Ruth Finlass, Kelley Colgan, Megan Kelly, Emma Kildea, Kara Earle and Kayleigh Dunning and the major success at underage level that they have had in recent years will surely soon transfer into senior titles.

  In last year’s final the experience and know-how of Kildride were the decisive factors and they know that Clann are getting closer to them with each year that passes by. However, there may by one more year in the champions and I take them to win narrowly on Saturday and make it four titles in a row.

Prediction: Kilbride

 

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