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Previews (July 26-28)

July 26th, 2012

With the two-week break from club games on the horizon, a busy few days are in store.


McGuigan Builders Intermediate Football Championship

Corduff v Donaghmoyne, Friday, 7.30, Aughnamullen


Corduff and Donaghmoyne enter the last chance saloon in the IFC on Friday evening at Aughnamullen.

Both sides lost their first-round matches – Corduff against Rockcorry by the narrowest of margins and Donaghmoyne by five points against Cremartin – so they need to win this one to stay in the competition. Donaghmoyne are seven points and five places ahead of Corduff in the IFL and they beat them by two points in their last encounter.

Corduff should be able to call on Keith McEnaney, Shane McNally Junior, Ciarán Brennan, Pádraic Keenan and Martin Mills to lead their challenge, while Donaghmoyne will be looking for big performances from Pauric Donaghy, Ciarán Daly, Bernard Kelly, Colm Connolly and John Cumiskey. The Fontenoys should emerge from this one.


McGuigan Builders Intermediate Football Championship

Aughnamullen v Toome, Saturday, 6.00, Clontibret

Doohamlet v Inniskeen, Saturday, 7.30, Clontibret


The IFC continues with a double-header in Clontibret on Saturday evening.

Aughnamullen and Toome also need to win on Saturday to keep their involvement in the championship alive. Aughnamullen fell to a disappointing defeat against Tyholland in the first round, while Toome lost narrowly to Inniskeen in a hard-hitting preliminary-round tie. The sides are honours even from their league clashes this year, with one win apiece, but Aughnamullen have been more consistent over the campaign and are currently seven points better off than Toome, who are bottom.

Pete Dooney, Colm Flanagan, Lee Conlan and Chris Keenan are big players for Aughnamullen, while Gavin Flanagan, Gary Wilson, Stephen Lambe and Stephen Quinn are crucial to Toome’s chances. Aughnamullen are tipped to advance.

The last remaining IFC first-round match sees the two teams relegated from senior last year go head-to-head.

Doohamlet and Inniskeen both dropped out of the top flight in 2011, but they have enjoyed contrasting fortunes so far this year. Doohamlet have led the way in the IFL almost since the start and they are currently five points clear at the top with a game in hand on their nearest challengers, while Inniskeen are languishing in seventh place after an inconsistent campaign up to now. Both teams had to work hard to get through the preliminary round, with Doohamlet edging out Seán McDermotts and Inniskeen battling past Toome. Doohamlet had a four-point win over Inniskeen in the league at the start of last month and a similar result would be no surprise.

Doohamlet’s star man is Colin Walshe and they can also call on players of the calibre of Paul McArdle, Ted Duffy, Shane and Ciarán McManus and Niall Johnny Connolly. Inniskeen have the ability to step up a few gears from what they have showed so far, with players like Matthew McKenna, Paul and Donal Meegan, Michael Lennon and Gerard McArdle in their ranks, although Ronan Meegan is suspended. Doohamlet are worthy favourites, however.

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Universal Graphics Junior Football Championship

Blackhill v Clones, Saturday, 6.00, Scotstown

Éire Óg v Killeevan, Saturday, 7.30, Scotstown


Also on Saturday evening, Scotstown is the venue for a double bill of JFC quarter-finals.

First up is the meeting of Clones and Blackhill at this stage of the competition for the second year in a row. Clones had 13 points to spare in that match on their way to the final, where they lost narrowly to Cremartin, so they will be fancied to advance to the last four for the fifth year in a row.

Clones lost to Oram in the preliminary round, but they bounced back with a six-point win over Aghabog and their league form has been good, leaving them third in the table with games in hand on every other team. Blackhill beat Killanny in the first round, only to fall to a heavy defeat against Emyvale last time out. The most recent league match between the teams produced a high-scoring match which Clones won by three points.

Clones have some of the best forwards in junior football in David Freeman, Adrian Alford and Darragh Holland, while Fintan Kelly, Micheál Treanor and Danny Rooney are also key players. Blackhill will need Colin Woods, Philip Donnelly and Donal and Ciarán Courtney on top form if they are to cause an upset.  A couple of recent defeats have seen Blackhill drop from mid-table to the bottom of the league, but they will be boosted by Emerald Sarsfields (their amalgamation with Oram) winning the Under-21 Division One title on Monday. This one should be beyond them, however.

The second match at St. Mary’s Park looks a harder one to call, with Éire Óg taking on Killeevan. The teams are level on points in the league in a three-way tie for fifth place and they have shared the points from their two meetings this year. Éire Óg ran out five-point winners last weekend after Killeevan had finished with five points to spare back in April.

Éire Óg fell to a one-point defeat against Drumhowan last time out after getting past Aghabog in their opener. Meanwhile, Killeevan lost to Emyvale, before bouncing back with wins over Fergal O’Hanlons and Oram.

Full-forward Paddy Croarkin and midfielder Ronan Cassidy are the main men for Éire Óg, but they will need more support from the likes of Pádraig McKenna, Marc McBride and Darach McCluskey. Killeevan have a mix of experienced players like Ian Larmer, Noel Smith and Vincent Martin, as well as young guns Kevin McGinn, Darren Quigley and Gerard Graham. This one has all the ingredients for a close finish, but if Éire Óg can supply Croarkin with good ball, they have the firepower to get through to the last four.


Silver Hill Foods

It’s back to the Silver Hill Foods Senior Hurling League this Thursday after the recent run of championship games. Castleblayney will attempt to join Inniskeen at the top of the table when they take on Carrickmacross, while Truagh have home advantage against Clontibret.


The busy schedule in the Drumlin Group of Credit Unions Senior Football League continues with a full round of games on Friday. Leaders Ballybay will attempt to bounce back from a couple of underwhelming results when they host Magheracloone, while a defeat for the Pearse Brothers could open the door for Clontibret, who are up against Castleblayney in Oram. Elsewhere, there is a repeat of last year’s SFC Final between Latton and Scotstown and a couple of big games in the bottom half between Currin and Monaghan Harps and Truagh and Carrickmacross.


The break has already all but kicked in for juvenile fixtures, with the only action in the Gerry’s Prepared Veg. competitions in the next few days being a couple of rescheduled Under-16 and Under-12 Football Leagues.

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