Oran onslaught stuns defending champions

After last weekend’s opening round thrills and spills, there’s just one major Gaelic football game locally this weekend, Michael Glavey’s versus Elphin on Saturday (see page 42).

Oran’s shock win over defending senior football club champions St. Brigid’s certainly electrified the championships on weekend one.

Now two of the obvious questions already posed are: Can Oran actually challenge, and are St. Brigid’s in trouble, or – as is much more likely – will they recover?

What a start this was to the championship last Friday. When have defending county champions last trailed by ten points at half-time…to a newly-promoted team?

That was the extraordinary situation at the interval in the Oran-St. Brigid’s game when last season’s intermediate champions sensationally outplayed the mighty Brigid’s men.

Oran led 2-6 to 0-2 at half-time, the goals coming from Darragh Walsh and Ciaran Lawless (2-11 to 0-8 at the final whistle).

We suspect that St. Brigid’s will get this one off their chests at the expense of one of their upcoming opponents.

Our selected games last weekend were Boyle v Roscommon Gaels and Clann na nGael v Strokestown (see reports by Seamus Duke). Boyle’s impressive win underlines their title credentials, while Clann were grateful to county star Ultan Harney, who struck with a decisive late goal.

Clann’s win was in Group A, where Padraig Pearses also got off to a winning start, points in injury-time from Emmett Kelly, Conor Daly and Davy Murray seeing them edge past Western Gaels.

In Oran’s group (Group C), Tulsk also made a statement of intent, defeating St. Croan’s comfortably, aided by goals from Tadhg O’Rourke and John Carleton.