Sunday 16 June 2019

Key games in U-21 football down for decision

Inclement weather limited progress on the playing fields during the past week and fingers are crossed that the action will return to both the U21 Football Championship and Ducon Cup this weekend.

Defending holders Kanturk open their Duhallow U21AFC campaign on an away trip to Millstreet on Monday night.

Kanturk are again amongst the front runners, the experience of sampling an outright triumph over Boherbue in last season's decider sure to instill confidence into the side. On doing so, Kanturk collected .their first outright win in a decade.

Putting together a well organised and efficient team performance, Kanturk tackled their task with great enthusiasm. The hungrier outfit and in general, they proved to be the much more enterprising to pull through.

Some of last season's Kanturk side remain involved, Darren Browne, James Fitzpatrick, Joe Carver, and Donncha Kenneally though Ian Walsh and the O'Keeffe brothers carry injuries.

Millstreet are availing of a second engagement to remain involved, having disappointed on a defeat to Boherbue first time out. Apart from a promisingly start, Millstreet operated second best and they will need to reinvent themselves if they are to remain in the championship race from a side that will include Beircheart O'Connor, Paul Sheehan, Oisin, Len, Alan Murphy and possibly Kevin Crowley.

The pressure is on Millstreet and a big improvement will be necessary if they are to maintain an interest otherwise Kanturk may hold the potency to advance.

At B level, Croke Rovers encounter Blackwater Gaels at Banteer on Saturday. First time out, Gaels comprising Cullen and Lyre came up short on a narrow defeat to St. Peters.

Indeed Gaels looked well equipped from the solidity of Colm Coughlan, Paul Fleming, Philip Murphy and Richard O'Connor to succeed only to concede a late goal.

For their part, Croke Rovers make their seasonal debut and that may prove a hindrance. Expected to figure for the Castlemagner and Kilbrin combination are Conor Murphy, Shane Crowley, Kieran O'Mahony, Niall Field and Cillian Buttimer.

Not much will separate the pairing though Gaels can hold the necessary attributes to offer the required improvement.