Minor Hurling Championship Previews

Fri 2nd Oct

Minor Hurling Championship Previews

There are five most intriguing games coming up in the Minor Hurling Championship with two finals and three Shield semi-finals across all three divisions.  In Rathmolyon, Kiltale/Boardsmill and Clann na nGael meet as they go in search of the PJ Stenson Cup while in Trim, Loughcrew Gaels/Gaeil Colmcille meet Navan O’Mahonys with the Erin Go Bragh Cup up for grabs.

 

Division 2 Final

 

Kiltale/Boardsmill v Clann na nGael – (Extra-Time if necessary)

Saturday October 3 – 13:00

Referee – Niall Burke (Na Fianna)

Venue – Rathmolyon

 

Kiltale/Boardsmill results to date:

Round 1 Kiltale / Boardsmill (2-12) (1-15) Dunderry Venue – Kiltale
Round 2 Kiltale / Boardsmill (4-11) (4-08) Wolfe Tones Venue – Kiltale
Round 3 Kiltale / Boardsmill BYE
Total Kiltale / Boardsmill (6-23) (5-23) Opposition

 

Clann na nGael results to date:

Round 1 Clann na nGael (2-14) (0-15) Kilmessan Venue – Dunsany
Round 2 Clann na nGael BYE
Round 3 Clann na nGael (2-15) (1-14) Na Fianna Ráth Cairn
Total Clann na nGael (4-29) (1-29) Opposition

 

Having won the PJ Stenson Cup when fielding on their own in 2019, a shortage of playing numbers has seen Kiltale join forces with Boardsmill this year and they now find themselves back in the Division 2 decider where this year Clann na nGael will provide the opposition with the final taking place in Rathmolyon.

 

Clann na nGael came through the group stage with a 100% record after winning both of their games after accounting for Kilmessan and Na Fianna in what were two tight affairs.  That experience along with playing in Division 1 during the League should stand to them if the match on Saturday is in the melting pot going down the home straight and they will look to the likes of Evan Cole, Ben Macken and Cillian Heaney to lead their charge.  If these along with county minor Evan Cole can hit top form, then Heaney could well be the one to lift the cup come the final whistle.

 

Kiltale/Boardsmill by contrast drew on the opening day against Dunderry before eking out a three point win over Wolfe Tones a month ago.  Twelve months ago, they got on top of St. Peter’s Dunboyne early on and had to stave off a second half comeback effort before winning out.  While their performances this year have not had the same level of fluidity, they have shown a knack of grinding out results and this is testament to the character Anthony Quinn has instilled in the side.  Sean Lynch has displayed a real goal scoring threat to date and he along with Vinny Walsh and Eoghan Frayne are three who the Clann na nGael defence will need to be at their most vigilant best if they’re to be kept quiet.

Verdict – Kiltale/Boardsmill

 

Division 3 Final

 

Loughcrew Gaels/Gaeil Colmcille v Navan O’Mahonys – (Extra-Time if necessary)

Saturday October 3 – 13:00

Referee – Gus Martyn (Dunderry)

Venue – Trim

 

Loughcrew Gaels/Gaeil Colmcille path to the final:

Round 1 Loughcrew Gaels / Gaeil Colmcille BYE
Round 2 Loughcrew Gaels / Gaeil Colmcille (1-15) (1-10) Navan O’Mahonys Venue – Kilskyre
Round 3 Loughcrew Gaels / Gaeil Colmcille (1-11) (1-05) Donaghmore / Ashbourne Venue – Ashbourne
Total Loughcrew Gaels / Gaeil Colmcille (2-26) (2-15) Opposition

 

Navan O’Mahonys path to the final:

Round 1 Navan O’Mahonys (4-20) (1-15) Donaghmore / Ashbourne Venue – Paddy O’Brien Park
Round 2 Navan O’Mahonys (0-10) (1-15) Loughcrew Gaels / Gaeil Colmcille Venue – Kilskyre
Round 3 Navan O’Mahonys BYE
Total Navan O’Mahonys (4-30) (2-30) Opposition

 

The Erin Go Bragh Cup is the prize on offer in Trim on Saturday as Loughcrew Gaels/Gaeil Colmcille and Navan O’Mahonys go into battle in a most intriguing Division 3 Final.  When these sides met in Round 2, the home side came out on top by eight points in Kilskyre but since then O’Mahonys have seen their U-15 side (many of whom are also on their Minors) qualify for their Division 1 semi-final while playing some outstanding hurling.

 

The Loughcrew Gaels/Gaeil Colmcille side are an older and more experienced team and most of their starting XV were on the Kilskyre/Gaeil Colmcille side which won the U-15 Division 3 decider two years ago while some of the younger members won the U-15 Division 2 title last year.  Seanie Geraghty pulls on the Bainisteoir bib and he is getting a great tune out of the team with the likes of Louis Finnegan, Tom Shine and James McDonnell hurling up a storm.

 

Word coming out of Paddy O’Brien Park is that O’Mahonys have a few injury concerns and they will be anxiously hoping that come lunchtime on Saturday all players are passed fit to play.  This could be the start of a big few days for most of the team with an U-15 Division 1 Championship semi-final to come on Tuesday against Dunderry.  Shane McCarthy was on fire for their football side in their MFC Final and he will line up here at centre back where his height and fielding ability under the dropping ball will be crucial.  Jack Quinn and Darragh Connell in the half forward line are two of their key operators and if Connell can find his scoring touch from frees then O’Mahonys will be right there with a chance of victory at the death.

Verdict – Loughcrew Gaels/Gaeil Colmcille

 

Division 1 Shield Semi-Final

 

Kildalkey v Killyon/Longwood (Extra-Time if necessary)

Saturday October 3 – 10:45

Referee – Shane Mooney (Dunderry)           

Venue – Fr. Plunkett Memorial Park

 

It is an early start on Saturday morning for the Minor hurlers from Kildalkey and Killyon/Longwood and both of these sides will fancy their chances of qualifying for the Shield Final on October 10 against St. Peter’s Dunboyne.  Killyon/Longwood were drawn in a most difficult group with both Ratoath and St. Peter’s Dunboyne and fell to two defeats while Kildalkey failed to hit their best form when falling to Trim and then drawing away to Rathmolyon.  They appear to carry a marginally greater scoring threat in their forward line and if that holds true then Kildalkey can edge this encounter.

Verdict – Kildalkey

 

Division 2 Shield Semi-Finals

 

Kilmessan v Dunderry – (Extra-Time if necessary)

Saturday October 3 – 13:00

Referee – Martin Ennis (Longwood)

Venue – Dunsany

 

These sides appear destined to meet in semi-finals this year having already been drawn against each other in the League semi-final, a game which is yet to be played, with Kilmessan having earned home advantage on both occasions.  Dunderry hurled excellently against Kiltale/Boardsmill in Round 1 but came up just short of the win as they settled for a share of the spoils.

 

Kilmessan pulled off a brilliant win over Na Fianna in Baconstown but a five point loss to Clann na nGael two weeks earlier cost them a shot at the Championship title.  Their forward line have been racking up totals which will win most games and if the likes of Noah Conroy, Daragh Horan and David King hit top form then Kilmessan can book a place in the final.

Verdict – Kilmessan

 

Wolfe Tones v Na Fianna – (Extra-Time if necessary)

Saturday October 3 – 13:00

Referee – Peter O’Halloran (Drumconrath)

Venue – Kilberry

 

Wolfe Tones have been showing well to date in the Championship, with their win over Dunderry being particularly eye catching.  If they had a game under their belts before the Kiltale/Boardsmill encounter, then one suspects the result may well have been different.  Na Fianna will be disappointed to have found themselves in the Shield, after contesting well in Division 1 of the League back in the Spring.  Oisín Bright anchors the defence from centre back while Rory Fagan is a player to watch out for at midfield.  They might just have enough to come away with the win, but extra-time may be necessary first.

Verdict – Na Fianna

 

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