Monday 24 June 2019

Fins bid to transform their Parnell Park fortunes

Club football

Rory Kerr

It's an important week in the county football championships, with Fingallians' Senior 2 semi-final clash with St Marys Saggart in Parnell Park this Saturday the stand-out fixture from a Fingal point of view.

This 3.45pm throw is the curtain-raiser to the Senior 1 south-side derby clash between Kilmacud Crokes and Ballyboden St Endas at 5.30.

The venue traditionally has not been a happy hunting ground for Fingallians. It was there they lost three successive Intermediate Championship deciders to Cuala, Naomh Olaf and Castleknock between 2012 and 2014, before finally achieving senior status with victory over Ballymun Kickhams at Garristown two years later.

Since then Fingallians have made quick progress, winning promotion to Division 2 where they are currently in the hunt for a play-off spot with two games to go.

Standing in their way this weekend are a St Mary's Saggart team who have gone unbeaten in the league since July 4th. They have accounted for Fingallians along the way, registering a two-point win over the Lawless Park men in August.

St Mary's Saggart's place was cemented in the last four courtesy of a late score by goalkeeper Shane Redmond.

The former Bray Wanderers netminder suffered the ignominy of conceding eight goals to Ballymun Kickhams in last year's championship in a game that led in part to the introduction of the second-tier championship after Mary's went down by a whopping 40 points.

Since then, though, Mary's have regrouped and their one-point win over Round Towers Clondalkin in the quarter-finals - a game where substitute Ciaran McGovern had a big bearing on the game - means that Fingallians cannot afford to be complacent. Nonetheless, with Paul Flynn in flying form, Wayne Knight's men should progress.

Down the road in Balgriffin, Round Towers Lusk take on Scoil Ui Chonaill in the Intermediate Championship semi-final at 4.30.

Lusk proved way too strong for Good Counsel in the last round but will have their work cut out against a Scoil Ui Chonaill outfit who are seasoned campaigners in Division 2 at this stage.

Two-time losing finalists Man O War take on St Finian's Newcastle in the Junior 1 Championship semi-final on Sunday as Joe Green's men attempt to take a step closer to lifting the trophy at the third time of asking.

Fingal Independent