Monaghan’s senior hurlers are back in championship action on Saturday, while barring reserve games, it’s a quiet enough week on the club scene.
Nicky Rackard Cup Round 2A
Roscommon v Monaghan, Saturday, 2.00, Athleague
Monaghan aim to qualify for the Nicky Rackard Cup semi-finals when they travel to Athleague to play Roscommon on Saturday.
Monaghan have lost just once this year under new manager Trevor Hilliard and they overcome a first-half red card to dominate their Nicky Rackard opener against Longford last week. Monaghan defeated Saturday’s opponents in the Allianz National Hurling League Division 3A, on their way to that sole defeat against Tyrone in the final, but they have found Roscommon a tougher prospect in the Rackard Cup, including last year when they lost in Inniskeen. 2013 runners-up Roscommon, who last won this competition back in 2007, started with a comfortable win over Fingal last Saturday.
Ronan Meegan (0-39) and Stephen Lambe (5-19) have been in prolific form all year for Monaghan, while Pauric Dowdall weighed in with a hat-trick last time out and Éanna Mac Suibhne, Niall Garland and Mark Treanor are also key players. Paddy Finnegan is out injured, but Hilliard will hope to have Peter Treanor, Conor Boyle and Colm Meegan available for selection. Jerry and Gary Fallon, Ronan O’Meara, Ian Delaney and Cillian Egan are key players for Roscommon.
There is one rescheduled game in the Monaghan Electrical Intermediate Football League on Friday evening, when Clones host Cremartin.
The last group games of the Silver Hill Foods Minor Hurling League take place over the weekend, with Inniskeen away to Carrickmacross and at home to Monaghan Harps on Sunday. The Silver Hill Foods Development Hurling League continues next Thursday, with leaders Dungannon away to Monaghan Harps, second-placed Carrickmacross going to Clontibret and Truagh at home to Castleblayney.
The Platinum Tanks Reserve Football Championships begin on Sunday. Aughnamullen, Ballybay, Clontibret and Truagh have home games against Tyholland, Latton, Monaghan Harps and Castleblayney respectively in the preliminary round of the O’Duffy Cup. The same stage of the Crawley Cup sees Corduff, Inniskeen, Killanny and Rockcorry host Seán McDermotts, Éire Óg, Blackhill and Doohamlet respectively.
The Platinum Tanks Reserve Football Leagues also continue. Scotstown have the chance to join Truagh and Clontibret at the top of Division 1A when they host Magheracloone on Sunday, while Emyvale make the short trip to Monaghan Harps for a Division 1B game on Wednesday. Carrickmacross can go joint-top of Division 2B if they beat Truagh on Wednesday, while either Clones or Aghabog can claim the Division Three top spot when they clash on Sunday.
Minor Football League Division One leaders Donaghmoyne are away to Monaghan Harps on Tuesday, while the race for qualification continues with the games between Scotstown and Truagh, St. Patrick’s and Clontibret and Carrickmacross v Seán McDermotts. Toome can return to the top of the MFL Division Two if they beat Emyvale on Sunday. The final round takes place on Tuesday, with Toome and Aughnamullen away to Na Mullaí Sarsfields and Inniskeen and Clones and Cremartin hosting Emyvale and Corduff respectively. Division Three table-toppers Killanny face Doohamlet on Tuesday, with nearest challengers Patrick Emmets at home to Rockcorry, Latton meeting Castleblayney and Tyholland up against Emerald Sarsfields.
The Gerry’s Prepared Veg. juvenile competitions continue with games in the Under-14 Football Leagues and Under-16 and Under-12 Hurling Leagues.