Wednesday 12 December 2018

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Cork Independent

Game On

Attractive double-header in Mallow

Thursday, 29th November, 2018 8:50am

Cloughduv vs Ballinameela

An intriguing contest in prospect here, especially as this in the sixth year in a row that the Waterford champions have reached the final. In fact it’s fair to say that the Cork and Waterford champions have dominated this championship in recent years. Ballinameela were relegated last year and their achievement in getting promoted immediately is an indication of their quality.

Like all rural clubs, families tend to drive the team and this side are no exception, with five Phelan brothers anchoring their challenge.

Brendan is their main attacker and was a member of the county under 21 panel in the past and is also their free taker, while Dave is a quality centre-back and at full-forward Brian is a handful.

The Curran brothers, Tom and Jim, along with goalkeeper Donagh Looby are also key players for the Deise outfit.

Cloughduv have really impressed in their games of late and the manner in which they won the County Final was an indication of their ability to close out matches.

They encountered a real physical challenge in the semi-final win over Boherlahan/Dualla away from home. They laid down an early marker, and when the Tipperary side battled back, they displayed tremendous resolve to see the game comfortably out.

Eoghan Clifford and Dave O’Leary are excellent defenders, while the Verlings, Brian and Mark, Joe Ryan, Andrew Cronin, Donal Corkery, James Moynihan and Brendan Barry Murphy all make important contributions in a very well balanced side.

Matches at this time of the year can be hard to call, but there’s a nice look to this Cloughduv side, and a consistent 60 minutes should be good enough to get them over the line.

Dromtarriffe vs

 

There is no doubt that this is a huge ask for Dromtarriffe if they are to keep the football title in Cork, won by their neighbours from Duhallow, Knocknagree, last year.

Beaufort are bidding to make it a clean sweep of the provincial titles for Kerry clubs, with Dr Crokes and Kilcummin already crowned champions. Ironically all three clubs are within touching distance of one another which is some feat.

Beaufort are playing in Division 2 of the Kerry county league which is a very high standard and the manner in which they easily disposed of the Tipperary and Clare champions is testament to their class. Jason Foley, Padraig Hartnett, Padraig O’Sullivan, Sean Kelleher, Kevin O’Brien and Conor Breen are among the main men for the Kingdom side.

Dromtarriffe play with spirit and determination, never more evident in the County Final where they came from behind to defeat a highly rated Kilmacabea team.

They were comfortable in their Munster wins over Kildimo Pallaskenry and Mount Sion, and have been without the experienced Seamus O’Sullivan, who should be fit for Sunday. Daniel O’Keeffe stepped up to the plate that day with 2-9, while Dan Mann, Denis O’Donoghue, Adam Buckley, Conor Cremin, Evan Murphy and Conor O’Callaghan have all impressed.

Beaufort are favourites and it’s hard to argue with that, Dromtarriffe face a huge task, but it looks like that the cup will once again be Kerry bound on Sunday.

Under 21 Hurling

 

A couple of interesting games in the Premier grade, weather permitting, the semi-finals should go ahead as a double-header in Páirc Uí Rinn on Saturday.

One pairing is certain and that’s the clash of Midleton and Douglas at 3.15pm. The latter have a strong squad on duty - among them Shane Kingston and Brian Turnbull.

Midleton will look to their minor winning side of a few weeks ago, along with Sean O’Leary Hayes, but Douglas get the nod.

Blackrock await the winners of the Sarsfields vs Fr O’Neill’s in the opener and with it being a quick turnaround for the East Cork side - they played on Wednesday - a fresher Rockies side should prevail.

The Premier 2 Final on Sunday is at 2.30pm and features two clubs that have enjoyed a good season so far, Ballincollig and Courcey Rovers, albeit Ballincollig are that bit better having won the Intermediate Championship and that experience might be enough to get them over the line.

Although Courcey’s only lost the Premier Intermediate Final narrowly after a replay, and with a number of that squad on duty, they will certainly test the Muskerry outfit.

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