CLG Mhuineacháin - Official Monaghan GAA Website

Previews (September 16-18)

September 15th, 2011

With the All-Ireland football finals taking all the attention on Sunday, it is a relatively quiet weekend of club games, but there is an Intermediate Football Championship semi-final replay down for decision on Friday, as well as a number of league games.

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McGuigan Builders Intermediate Football Championship Semi-Final Replay

Corduff v Rockcorry, Friday, 8.00, Inniskeen


Corduff and Rockcorry battle it out once again on Friday in their IFC semi-final replay, with a place in the final against Carrickmacross on offer for the winners.

Corduff were relieved to escape with a draw last Sunday via a late point from a free by Keith McEnaney after Rockcorry had looked set to edge a low-scoring game, but both sides have the potential to improve this time in what should be better conditions.

Corduff have adapted very well to the higher standard of intermediate after last year’s promotion via Junior Championship success and they took the direct route to the semi-finals with wins over Éire Óg and Donaghmoyne, which have stretched their unbeaten championship run to an impressive 14 games. Rockcorry had to bounce back from a preliminary-round defeat against Currin to beat Drumhowan and emulate Corduff by seeing off both Éire Óg and Donaghmoyne.

Corduff have had the better record in the IFL this year and they are second in the table on 20 points (six points and three places ahead of their opponents), but Rock beat them by a point in the league.

Corduff have the potential to up their scoring rate considerably from last Sunday, with Keith McEnaney, Raymond Byrne and Martin Mills the main men up front. Cathal Connolly will hope to have his regular midfield partner, Corduff captain Shane Connolly, back, while Declan Larkin and Ciarán Brennan anchor the defence, with good support from Shane McNally Jnr. and Ben Woods. Rock, who lost to Tyholland in last year’s semi-finals, are also strong down the middle, with Mark Daly and Noel Carroll at centre-field and Damien Matthews and Barry Patterson at full-back and centre-back respectively. Keith Daly, Stephen McGuirk and Niall McKeown (if recovered from an injury that forced him to go off early last week) are also key players in defence for Rock, with Paul McKeown and Mark McGuirk the main men up front.

Also on Friday, Castleblayney hurlers will look to build on their SHC success last weekend when they take on Belfast side Patrick Sarsfields in the Ulster Club Senior Hurling League Division Four Final. Blayney have won all five games they have played in the competition so far and they will be keen to continue that record, which would be a welcome boost ahead of next month’s attempt to win the Ulster Club IHC. The Monaghan champions will hope that ace free-taker Mickey McHugh can continue the form that saw him score 1-11 last Sunday.

The penultimate round of the Drumlin Group of Credit Unions Senior Football League takes place on Saturday. Clontibret will be expected to secure fourth place when they host Inniskeen, but any slip-ups will give Castleblayney and Scotstown a chance to stay in contention if they can beat Magheracloone and Doohamlet respectively. Leaders Ballybay are away to Monaghan Harps, while Truagh are up against Latton.

After safely qualifying for the championship final last Saturday, Carrickmacross have a home game against strugglers Éire Óg on Saturday. Drumhowan need to beat Tyholland if they are to have any chance of avoiding relegation, while Aughnamullen can take a big step towards staying up if they can take points from Currin.

The Gerry’s Fresh Fruit and Veg. Under-16 Football Championship Division One and Two Finals take place on Saturday. Monaghan Harps and Scotstown contest the Division One decider in Smithborough, while the Division Two game sees Donaghmoyne and Magheracloone go head-to-head in Inniskeen. Meanwhile, Blackhill and Doohamlet clash once again in the replay of the Under-16 Football League Division Four Final.

There are a few games in the Platinum Tanks Reserve Football Leagues to be played on Sunday, including a Division One game between Castleblayney and Cremartin. Ballybay are at home to neighbours Drumhowan in Division Two and Inniskeen make the long trip to Tyholland, while the Division Three games see Clontibret and Rockcorry host Emyvale and Oram respectively. Castleblayney have home advantage against Cootehill in the Silver Hill Foods Minor Hurling League semi-finals on Sunday, with the other semi between in-form Emmet Grattans and championship winners Clontibret taking place on Tuesday under lights in Inniskeen.

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