Friday 27 April 2018

Weekend GAA previews

Allianz NHL

Division 1

Tipperary v Waterford, Semple Stadium, 7.30, J Owens (Wexford)

* Live Setanta Ireland

Losing their first two league games doesn't exactly constitute a crisis for Tipperary, but Declan Ryan would feel that it's high time to win a match.

Tipp weren't sufficiently competitive against Kilkenny or disciplined enough against Dublin, so tonight offers a chance to get back to doing the simple things well and injecting some consistent patterns into their game.

Waterford have taken three of a possible four points but are well below full-strength and will probably find that Tipp's need to avoid a third successive defeat creates the climate for a home win.

Odds: Tipperary 4/9, Waterford 2/1, Draw 11/1.

Verdict: Tipperary.

Division 2

Laois v Antrim, Portlaoise, 2.30, C Lyons (Cork)

A precursor to the Leinster Championship clash between the sides at the same venue on May 14, this is also important in terms of the two sides keeping in touch with the promotion pace.

Both have won and lost a game but Antrim will take more from their defeat as they lost to promotion fancies Clare, whereas Laois went down to Carlow.

Odds: Antrim 4/5, Laois 11/10, Draw 10/1.

Verdict: Laois.

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Division 4

London v Longford, Tir Chonaill Park, Greenford, 1.30, D Corcoran (Mayo)

The promotion contenders are all trying to use the games with Kilkenny and London to build their scoring difference, which could decide some key issues in two months' time. Longford are on track for the business end of the table and will reinforce that today.

Odds: Longford 1/33, London 10/1, Draw 20/1.

Verdict: Longford.

Dr McKenna Cup final

(Extra-time if necessary).

Derry v Tyrone, Athletic Grounds, 7.0

Derry beat Tyrone by a point in the first round of the Division 2 series, but their fortunes varied wildly last time out in the league. Tyrone beat Sligo by six points while Derry lost to Laois by 14 points. It makes tonight's game vital in terms of creating momentum for the drive towards promotion.

Odds: Tyrone 10/11, Derry 11/10, Draw 7/1.

Verdict: Tyrone.

Leinster Colleges SFC semi-final

St Pat's Navan v Moate CS, Cusack Park, 2.0

After their demolition of St Peter's in the quarter-final, St Pat's are being earmarked for great things, but Moate shocked them two years ago and are hoping for a repeat.

Verdict: St Pat's.

Munster VS SH final

Borrisokane CC v Roscrea CC, Dolla, 2.30

Roscrea's Eoin Ryan will be a marked man for this Munster final after scoring 1-7 in his side's semi-final win over Clonakilty.

Borrisokane came out of a tighter semi to beat St Brogan's and have their work cut out today.

Verdict: Roscrea.

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Division 4

Derry v Roscommon

Faughanvale, 5.0

Verdict: Roscommon


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Division 1

Cork v Galway, Pairc Ui Chaoimh, 2.30, B Gavin (Offaly). * Live TG4

Galway beat Cork quite comfortably in their two league clashes last year and have made an impressive start this time, running up 1-24 against both Wexford and Offaly.

Still, the markets appear to have read more into Cork's close call against Kilkenny, where they fell a point short after a brave recovery.

Odds: Cork 4/6, Galway 11/8, Draw 10/1.

Verdict: Galway.

Offaly v Dublin, Tullamore, 2.30, A Kelly (Galway). * Deferred coverage TG4

Offaly would have targeted Dublin and Wexford as the most likely sources of points, so this really is a crucial game for them.

However, they have conceded 2-44 in their first two outings against Cork and Galway, whereas Dublin have beaten Tipp and drawn with Waterford in the league and also beat Kilkenny in the Walsh Cup final.

They're going well but won't need to be reminded that they lost the corresponding tie with Offaly by 17 points last year.

Odds: Dublin 4/6, Offaly 6/4, Draw 10/1.

Verdict: Dublin.

Kilkenny v Wexford, Nowlan Park, 2.30, T Carroll (Offaly)

Did anybody ever think they would see the day when Wexford would be 9/1 to beat Kilkenny? Worrying times for Wexford, although they did show far more spirit and organisation against Waterford than in that abysmal defeat to Galway on the opening day.

Kilkenny's Walsh Cup final defeat by Dublin last Sunday may be bad news for Wexford as Brian Cody's beady eye will be on those who didn't perform quite to the expected level.

Odds: Kilkenny 1/20, Wexford 9/1, Draw 16/1.

Verdict: Kilkenny.

Division 2

Westmeath v Clare, Mullingar, 2.30, G Duffy (Antrim)

Clare badly needed a lift after the dismal opening-day collapse against Limerick and they got it against Antrim last time out. That victory over the Ulster men should settle them into a strong rhythm for a promotion push.

Odds: Clare 1/8, Westmeath 5/1, Draw 14/1.

Verdict: Clare.

Down v Limerick, Portaferry, 1.30, O Elliot (Antrim)

Revitalised under new manager Donal o'Grady, Limerick will win all seven games in the group -- the only question is, by how much?

Odds: Limerick 1/12, Down 7/1, Draw 7/1.

Verdict: Limerick.

Carlow v Kerry, Dr Cullen Park, 2.30, S Whelan (Wexford)

Carlow lost to Down, who lost to Kerry in the opening rounds. Still, Carlow beat Laois last time out and do have home advantage.

Odds: Carlow 3/10, Kerry 11/4, Draw 11/1.

Verdict: Carlow

Division 3A

Armagh v Kildare

Athletic Grounds, 2.30, Verdict: Armagh.

Derry v Meath

Swatragh, 2.30,

Verdict: Derry.

London v Wicklow

Ruislip, 1.0

Verdict: London

Division 3B

Monaghan v Donegal

Clones, 2.30

Verdict: Donegal.

Fingal v Louth

Swords, 2.30

Verdict: Louth.

Roscommon v Sligo

Athleague, 2.30

Verdict: Roscommon.

Division 4

Cavan v Tyrone

Kingspan Breffni Park, 2.30 Verdict: Tyrone

Leitrim v Longford

Carrick-on-Shannon, 2.30

Verdict: Leitrim

Fermanagh v South Down

Enniskillen, 2.30

Verdict: Fermanagh

Corn Ui Mhuiri SFC final

Col Chriost Ri Cork v PS Chorca Dhuibhne Dingle, Dr Crokes, 2.30

PS Chorca Dhuibhne Dingle are underdogs, though few would have touted Colaiste Chriost Ri for a final spot as the Cork school look to end a seven-year wait for the Munster title.

Both sides upset the odds last month when reaching the final.

The Dingle men will be fired by Padraig O Se (son of Kerry legend Paidi), Ryan O Beaglaoich, Tomas O Caomhanaigh and Eanna O Conchuir, while the Cork side will hope Rebel minors Luke Connolly and Kevin Fulignati can provide leadership.

Verdict: Col Chriost Ri.


Division 1

Kildare v Monaghan, Ballykelly, 2.0

Monaghan travel to Kildare looking to make it four wins out of four.

They will be sure to trouble a Kildare back-line that has conceded seven goals in three games.

The Lilywhites have played good football in their opening rounds, including a draw with Galway last time, but this may be a step too far for them.

Verdict: Monaghan

Tyrone v Laois, St Mary's Park, Beragh, 2.0

Beaten All-Ireland finalists Tyrone host Laois as both teams try to break out of the bottom half.

Laois were impressive against Mayo in Round 3 and will hope to build momentum.

Verdict: Laois.

Mayo v Galway, Ballindine, 2.0, Having lost their opening three games, Mayo will look to finally put some points on the board.

Triona McNicholas was in sparkling form last time out, scoring two goals against Cork, and Mayo will need her and Cora Staunton to continue where they left off. Verdict: Mayo.

Cork v Donegal, CIT, 2.0

Donegal are on cloud nine -- three games, three wins and 15 goals. But away to Cork, they will face some serious footballers.

Stopping Valerie Mulcahy will be the top priority for Donegal. But the Rebelettes will be just as concerned with Yvonne McMonagle. A fascinating contest awaits.

Verdict: Cork

Division 2

Sligo v Meath

Geevagh, 2.0

Verdict: Meath

Waterford v Tipperary

St Mollerans, 2.0

Verdict: Waterford

Kerry v Armagh

Finuge, 12.0

Verdict: Kerry

Cavan v Dublin

Muinterconnacht, 12.0

Verdict: Dublin

Division 3

Fermanagh v Wexford Derrlyin, 2.0

Verdict: Fermanagh

Leitrim v Longford Ballinamore, 2.45

Verdict: Longford

Down v Wicklow Saval, 2.0

Verdict: Down

Clare v Limerick Milltown-Malbay, 2.0

Verdict: Clare

Division 4

Carlow v Kilkenny Tinryland, 2.30

Verdict: Carlow

Offaly v Westmeath Ferbane2.0

Verdict: Westmeath


All-Ireland Senior club Final

Inniscarra (Cork) v Killimor (Galway), 3.0, Croke Park

Rena Buckley is chasing the one All-Ireland medal missing from her collection in both codes. Any team coming out of Cork has to be rated and they look like they have many of the tools required.

Killimor have the likes of Brenda Hanney, Martina Conroy and Eimear Haverty in their ranks and playing in the wide open spaces of Croker will suit them. This should go right down to the wire, but Killimor's impressive semi-final win over Oulart-The Ballagh suggests that it just might be their year.

Verdict: Killimor.

All-Ireland Intermediate

club Final

Eoghan Rua (Derry) v The Harps (Laois), 1.0, Croke Park

The Harps are in their first year at intermediate level, having dominated the junior ranks in recent years, winning three All-Irelands in a row from 2006-08. Eoghan Rua surprised people when overcoming Lismore in the semi-final and it is the McGoldrick sisters, Meabh and Grainne, that make the Derry representatives tick. The Harps have the experience of playing at All-Ireland level and Croke Park might just suit them better.

Verdict: The Harps.


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