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Killanin now set sights on provincial glory

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Killanin's Cathal Sweeney who will be hoping to make an impression in Sunday's Connacht Club intermediate football semi-final against Calry/St. Joseph's at Tuam Stadium.

KILLANIN boss Pat Quealey has not ruled out springing Kevin Walsh from the bench once again for their Connacht championship campaign after the 45-year-old Galway manager and former All-Star winner was a surprise impact substitute in the club’s county final victory over Moycullen earlier this month.

Walsh’s sensational appearance proved vital in aiding his native club to secure the title on a 0-13 to 0-10 scoreline, with Galway’s former All-Ireland winner introduced in the closing stages to replace injured midfielder Éamon McDonagh, who had sustained a hand injury.

While Walsh’s focus turns to getting Galway footballers up and running for 2015, his club boss has not ruled out seeing him again in Killanin’s provincial campaign. “I don’t know,” smiles Quealey, as he prepared his side for Sunday’s Connacht semi-final tie against Calry/St. Joseph’s at Tuam Stadium (2pm).

“That (Walsh’s county final appearance) was a very special moment for everybody. He went in there and did a job. In fairness to Kevin, he was asked a number of weeks before the final – because we did have injuries – and when we made the call to Kevin he answered straight away. ‘I will be there,’ he said.

“We don’t know if he will be able to tog for the Connacht championship because the Galway job is a huge thing for him at the moment. You never know. We are full of surprises,” said Quealey, who noted, regardless, their semi-final against the Sligo holders promises to be a big day for the Connemara parish.

“It is a massive occasion for the club because it is a place the club has never been before. As you can see by the numbers we have [at training] – and we have a few lads who are away in college in Waterford and Dublin – we are in a good position.

“So, it is a huge occasion and the lads are embracing it. I mean, as everyone knows, our panel goes from 17 to 45 and there are quite a few lads who spent many, many years playing senior football without any medals to show for it. So, this is for everybody.”

While their county final victory was another great day in the club’s history, Quealey highlighted within the week the players were back in training. “We were back training the Thursday night after the county final because on the Saturday, six days after the county final, we had to play Claregalway in the league.

“We were delighted with that because it got the lads back focused straight away after the county final and focused on the next challenge. So, it was a good work out for some of the lads because, no doubt, the lads did celebrate a bit. In all honesty, though I don’t think anybody celebrated beyond Wednesday.”

Consequently, he said the players’ attitude has been very good in the lead-in to this game. “We are now able to call on some of our juniors as well who were, unfortunately, knocked out of the junior ‘A’ championship. So, it means we can call up some of them now which strengthens up our panel as well.”

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

CITY TRIBUNE

City sides will fancy chances of advancing as champions face Corofin

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Bearna's James Kennedy hits the deck in Ballinasloe on Tuesday as Annaghdown's Frankie Burke and Darragh Meehan try to chase down possession. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

The battle for this year’s county Senior Gaelic football club title looks to be wide open after the quarter-final draw was made this week following the delayed conclusion of the group stages on Tuesday night.

Salthill/Knocknacarra, who finished second in group 2, have been handed a last eight tie with a Tuam Stars side that finished third in group 1; while St Michael’s, who topped Group 3, will face an Annaghdown side that nabbed the final quarter-final spot in dramatic fashion on Tuesday night.

They went into their game with Bearna knowing they needed to win by a minimum of 12points to pip Milltown to the final qualifying spot as the second best of the teams that finished third in the group stages.

They looked to be coming up just short until they were awarded a late free, which goalkeeper James Healy converted, to snatch that remaining quarter-final slot on socring difference form Milltown.

The 2020 champions, Moycullen, will take on Claregalway in the last eight; while the pick of the ties is undoubtedly the clash of defending champions, Mountbellew/Moylough, with a Corofin side that was denied the five-in-a-row by Moycullen two years ago.

At the other end of the equation, St James’ are in a relegation battle, and face a clash with An Spidéal in the preliminary play-offs. A win will secure their senior status for another year, but a defeat will see them join Oughterard, An Cheathru Rua, and the losers of the other preliminary play-off between Caherlistrane and Monivea/Abbey in a round robin league, with the bottom two sides in those play-offs dropping to the intermediate ranks next year.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Play-offs dress rehearsal facing Utd against Treaty

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Former Galway United player Enda Curran celebrates his recent hat-trick for Treaty United in their FAI Cup quarter-final win over UCD. The in-form Mervue native will be facing the Tribesmen in a First Division clash on Friday.

GALWAY United head to Limerick this Friday evening for what is looking like a dress rehearsal for the end-of-season play-offs as they take on Treaty United in the Markets Field (7.45pm).

This is United’s game-in-hand over league leaders, Cork City, and a win will see them close the gap on the Leesiders to four points with three games remaining, and while a win would give the slightest of hopes of a late challenge for league honours, it is more likely to serve as a further boost to confidence ahead of the protracted play-off series that kicks-off at the end of next month.

United need to win their final four games to have any hope of snatching the title, and given the goal difference between the sides, they also need to hope that City don’t pick up more than four points from their last three games, if they are to finish top of the pile.

United’s last three games after this weekend are at home to Athlone, away to Wexford, and home to Longford Town; while City are home to Wexford, away to Athlone, and home to Bray, the easier of the two run-ins, so for United it is all about building momentum ahead of the play-offs.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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CITY TRIBUNE

Late points from Burke and Wall grab draw for Corofin

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Tuam Stars' Paul Collins tries to halt Ronan Steede of Corofin in his tracks during Sunday's Senior Football Group 1 encounter at Tuam Stadium. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

Corofin 0-16

Tuam Stars 0-16

Eanna O’Reilly at Tuam Stadium

A late point from Corofin’s Ian Burke denied Tuam Stars a notable win over their close neighbours in an entertaining contest at Tuam Stadium on Sunday afternoon. In a closely fought contest, the Stars appeared to have done enough with two late points from Brian Mannion putting them ahead by 0-16 to 0-14 in the dying minutes of the second half.

In typically composed fashion however, Corofin refused to panic and used all of their experience to engineer two late scores, the first from Dylan Wall, before Burke held his nerve to convert a mark to give Corofin a share of the spoils.

The result means that both sides qualified for the quarter finals, after both finished the group stages with eight points. Corofin were drawn against defending champions Mountbellew/Moylough in a mouth-watering tie, while Tuam Stars will face Salthill/Knocknacara in another intriguing clash.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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