By Mike Fitzpatrick
Junior Football A
Rangers vs. Down
Rangers, under the expert guidance of Denis Tuomey, are currently sitting in the enviable position at the top of the junior ranks. With eight points from five games played, the Blues look dead certain for qualification for the playoffs. We’ve seen before how Rangers were able to grind out results in this division without really reaching top form, then slip up in the playoffs. This season however, Tuomey’s men have reached a level where they have gotten the results despite spirited performances from their opponents. Down, on the other hand, have it all to play for.
Collie Mather’s men from the Mourne sit in third place, and really need the championship points in this game to stand a chance of reaching playoff glory to move ahead of bitter rivals Fermanagh in the championship race. Down had the opportunity to move up the table last Sunday, but the gods decided different and the downpour that ensued waterlogged the pitch at Gaelic Park, postponing their game. It’s sure to be a cracking game, with both sides having every thing to play for.
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Offaly vs. Westmeath
Two sides in the bottom half of the senior hurling table come face to face in this championship clash at Gaelic Park. Tom Nugent’s Westmeath men started well but having been well and truly hammered by champions Tipperary two weeks ago, they’ll be looking to get back on their feet with a victory over rivals Offaly. Sean Guinan’s Offaly men started their season in fine form with a fabulous performance versus Limerick, when they almost defeated the mighty greens only for some late Limerick scoring that gave the former champs a draw.
Offaly have played well versus the top teams, and will be all out to grab the points from dark horses Westmeath to move forward into a better position nearer the top of the division.
Ladies Football Final
Cavan vs. Mayo
Cavan will be seeking their six straight LGAA title.
Senior Football Div. 1
Tyrone vs. Kerry
The icing on the cake as far as games today go. Between these two sides, they’ve won eight out of nine games played. Kerry, the kingpins who hold the championship trophy, have won all five of their games so far this season.
Tyrone have gained six out of a possible eight points and look to be a side that may give Paddy Kearney’s men a run for their money. Expect to see the odd intercounty star out for this one, as Tyrone would like nothing better than to put one over on their rivals from the south. Kerry have already qualified for the playoffs, so can afford to relax a little, though with the way they’ve been playing recently, it’s difficult to imagine the likes of Paddy O’Connor, Bingo Driscoll and Co. taking a breather. The Duke’s men will go all out for victory, and having lost out to Westmeath in their last showdown at the Park, will surely be all out for the win here.
I feel that if any side can match Kerry on current form, it will be Tyrone, but only if they field their very best starting fifteen, and take advantage of the fact that Kerry don’t need the championship points as much as they do.