COUNTY PREMIER IFC SEMI-FINAL
Newmarket v Cill na Martra
Saturday, November 13 in Glantane at 3pm
At opportune timing, Newmarket’s graph is heading in the right direction. Perhaps a degree of luck earned progress out of a competitive group before Newmarket delivered a highly impressive showing against Naomh Abán in a one sided quarter final.
Early on, a bit of a roller coaster run for Newmarket, drawing with Aghada but performed well below par against Na Piarsaigh. And Newmarket left it late on digging their way out of trouble against Castletownbere, erasing a five point deficit and Kevin O’Sullivan’s late goal snatched a dramatic triumph.
No such bother for Newmarket against Naomh Abán, blasting out a message of intent on a resounding victory. Producing a performance brimful of commitment and resolve, Newmarket were far the better team, showing more composure in their play and crucially more scoring options with nine players on the scoresheet
Josh O’Keeffe returned from injury to man the uprights with Mikie Browne, Alan Ryan, T J Brosnan and Bart Daly bringing experience to defence. In the centre, Michael Cottrell and Tim Murphy form a solid midfield pairing, while the attack centres on the O’Keeffes, Ryan and Conor, along with Barry O’Connor and Kevin O’Sullivan.
Defeated narrowly in a semi-final last season by Kanturk, Cill na Martra got their 2021 campaign off to the perfect start following an emphatic victory over Nemo Rangers with three goals netted by Dan and Shane O Duinnín.
The Gaeltacht side strengthened their claims for a position in the knockout phase by overcoming Rockchapel, a solid team ethic helped secure a 10-point interval advantage that laid the groundwork for a win.
And Cill na Martra duly wrapped up their group with a 100 percent record by bettering St Vincent’s. On duty is an experienced line up with Graham O Mochain, Tadgh O Corcora and Noel O Laoire operating in defence.
From the midfield region, Gearóid O Goillidhe, Finbarr Ó hEalairthe and Michéal Ó Deasúna bring strong credentials with the Ó Duinnins a major threat going forward.
From an unbeaten run in the group format, Cill na Martra are fancied to reach the final. That said, bypassing a quarter final last season impacted on failing to play anywhere near form on a semi-final exit to Kanturk.
And with Newmarket building momentum at the right time, they may well create a surprise.