A FORTNIGHT AFTER their All-Ireland final loss to Donegal, some members of Mayo’s squad must attempt to recover with the county senior football semi-finals down for decision on Sunday.
At 1.30pm in McHale Park, Ballintubber will face Crossmolina in the opening clash of the double-header. Ballintubber, who are chasing a third successive county senior football crown, have to plan without attacking star Cillian O’Connor who dislocated his shoulder in a league game last weekend.
Alan Dillon, Danny Geraghty and Jason Gibbons are their county representatives. Crossmolina can call upon Peadar Gardiner and Cathal Carolan who were part of the substitutes for the All-Ireland final.
The second semi-final will see Knockmore, who have lost four finals in the last 11 years, meeting Ballaghadereen, the 2008 champions, in McHale Park at 3pm. Knockmore can look to county men Kevin McLoughlin and Shane McHale for inspiration while Ballaghadereen must cope without long-term injury victim Andy Moran.
In Ballyhaunis at 12pm on Sunday, the relegation semi-final clash will take place between Breaffy and Ballina Stephenites. The O’Shea brothers, Aidan and Seamus, will be the backbone of the Breaffy challenge while David Clarke, Ger Cafferkey, Evan Regan and Ronan McGarrity are in the Ballina Stephenites ranks.
Meanwhile the county championship in Donegal, which is behind schedule after the heroics of Jim McGuinness’s side in the All-Ireland championship, continues this weekend with the second legs of the eight first round games taking place. There are four matches on tomorrow evening at 5pm and four games on Sunday afternoon at 3.30pm.
Tomorrow Naomh Conaill (Anthony Thompson, Leo McLoone, Anthony Thompson and Marty Boyle) face St Naul’s (Stephen Griffin) with Naomh Conaill winning last weekend’s clash by 1-9 to 0-3. St Michael’s (Colm McFadden, Christy Toye, Martin McElhinney and Daniel McLaughlin) defeated Sean MacCumhaill’s (Martin O’Reilly) by 3-19 to 1-6 last week.
Dungloe (Adrian O’Hanlon) will battle with Cloughaneely after getting the better of them by 0-10 to 0-7 last week. The final game tomorrow sees Killybegs meet Fanad with last week’s tie ending in a draw at 1-7 to 0-10 apiece.
On Sunday, Kilcar (Mark McHugh and Patrick McBrearty) will go up against St Eunan’s (Rory Kavanagh) after Kilcar emerged with a 1-8 to 1-5 victory last week. Glenfin (Frank McGlynn) face Bundoran, who won 2-10 to 0-8 last week.
Glenswilly (Michael Murphy and Neil Gallagher) will seek to build on their 0-9 to 0-7 success over Gweedore (Neil and Eamonn McGree) in the first leg. The last clash will see Four Masters (Paul Durcan and Karl Lacey) up against Ardara (Paddy McGrath) after Four Masters succeeded by 0-9 to 0-7 last week.