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Cork Independent

Game On

Premier hurling ties dominate

Wednesday, 13th September, 2017 6:01pm

In recent years this championship has produced some outstanding games and that trend has been maintained this season. It is now down to the last four and Saturday’s double header in Páirc Uí Rinn is an attractive one.

Mallow vs Cloyne

An intriguing encounter in prospect here as Mallow are still active on both fronts and enjoying some very good wins but this will test them as Cloyne have been equally impressive in their campaign to date.

Donal Óg’s return in the number one jersey has added assurance to an already competent and efficient defence that will yield little.

The O’Sullivans, Paudie and Diarmuid, add experience in attack with Dylan Cahill a solid performer in a team that are very resolute and hard to beat.

Mallow demolished Valley Rovers in the last round and they will look to the Sheehans and Cormac Murphy to get them over this difficult obstacle. They will need to be at their best from the start, anything less, and Cloyne will win.

Kanturk vs Ballinhassig

Two sides with a lot of quality players on duty and this is a hard one to call although Kanturk’s recent championship activity may give them an edge in match sharpness.

The regulars such as Anthony Nash, the McLoughlins, John and Lorcan, Aidan Walsh and Darren Browne will spearhead the challenge.

There is a nice blend of youth and experience in the Ballinhassig side, with the Collins brothers and Fintan O’Leary key men for them, but the odds favour Kanturk as they look better balanced.

 

In the intermediate grade, Midleton and Na Piarsaigh meet in Carrigtowhill on Friday night. Since they last played, both have lost players to their senior sides which makes picking a winner difficult but Midleton might have a bit more depth and that should be enough to grind out a win.

The last fourth round game in the Senior Championship also involves Midleton when they play UCC in Páirc Uí Rinn on Sunday at 6.30pm and this could be a tricky one for the East Cork outfit.

College could have a strong side on duty, but as ever, they are dependent on how some of their players fare with their clubs over the weekend.

Conor Lehane, Killian Burke, Luke O’Farrell and Tommy Wallis are big players for Midleton and maybe the better preparation will help get them over the line.

Football Championships

Replays dominate in the Premier and Intermediate grade, with Eire Óg and St Michaels meeting in Carrigaline at 5.30pm on Saturday. Both sides had opportunities to win the drawn encounter and it was a cracking Daniel Goulding point that earned the Muskerry outfit a second chance.

If Ronan O’Toole can get a grip in midfield and Goulding gets a decent supply they might edge it but Michael’s showed enough the last day to ensure another close encounter.

Mourneabbey is the venue for the double-header starting with Ballydesmond and Mitchelstown at 3.30pm with Rockchapel and Aghabullogue to follow at 5pm. Both games generated fair entertainment last week, they will be just as tight again, with a possible Duhallow double on the cards.

 

Camogie

After the drama and excitement of Croke Park and that outstanding win by senior team, the SE Systems County Senior Championship resumes at the weekend with several games down for decision.

Two games on Saturday in Castle Road; at 5.45pm St Finbarr’s play Ballincollig and the city side will hope that Gemma O’Connor will repeat her heroics of last Sunday and that Meave Cahalane will be fit to play, the outcome could depend on their availability.

Inniscarra, the champions, and Courcey Rovers also play, time and venue to be confirmed, and here Rena Buckley and Niamh McCarthy should guide Inniscarra to victory.

It’s back to Castle Road on Sunday at 5.45pm for the meeting of Glen Rovers and Ballygarvan who have had some close encounters over the years, this one will be just as tight with a fancy for Glen to win.

Let’s return to last Sunday and what a brilliant win to dethrone Kilkenny for a third title in four years. Tactically Paudie Murray got it spot on, the match ups worked a treat, the spirit and the fitness levels and determination were evident from the start.

The Intermediate team came close to making it a double and will now have to wait until 1 October for the replay.

However if camogie is to thrive then the people at the top would really need to look at the standard of refereeing, as in this final, it was just dreadful-stop start all throughout with trivial frees being awarded and no flow whatsoever to the game.

Congratulations again to all involved.

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