With the Wexford hurling championships starting this weekend Michael Dwyer looks forward to what promises to be another exciting hurling championship.
This weekend, the Pettitt’s Senior Hurling Championship propells into action with 6 relishing bouts to replenish a starved appetite of club hurling excitement!
Newly-promoted Oylegate-Glenbrien are greeted on Saturday by the daunting challenge of the Faythe Harriers in Killurin at 6pm. While Pádraig Doran is a reliable talisman for the blue-and white, the youthful and entertaining ‘Harriers have an inventory of scoring-talent like Lee Chin and Rhys Clarke. Even though the experience of competition in the Leinster stages of last year’s Intermediate grade will benefit Oylegate, the ‘Harriers, who are promising contenders for the U-21 championship, should claim the spoils of success.
Killurin’s second game consists of an uphill battle for St. Anne’s as they face the gruelling task of taking on Oulart-the-Ballagh. Dual star Liam Óg McGovern is sure to be prominent for Rathangan but the sheer vivacity that Nicky Kirwan, David Redmond and Conor Goff exhibited last year should return to assure a successful championship first-outing for manager Martin Storey.
Bellefield hosts a Saturday doubleheader also as Glynn-Barntown and Rathnure take to the field. The hurling pedigree of the black-and-amber is matched by the young exuberance of the Killurin men. The terrific flair of Gary Moore for Glynn is evident. Rathnure will suffer from the absence of Trevor Hogan and Paul Codd yet in spite of this detrimental loss, makes me hastily predict a draw.
The latter clash of Bellefield is between Cloughbawn and St Martin’s. Last year, Barry Lambert was outstanding for the maroon while Cloughbawn’s Barry Carton is known for his regular scoring execution. The wealth and strength of the Piercestown contingent should marginally see off a valiant challenge from Gary Laffan’s men.
Adamastown and Rapparees open a Sunday doubleheader at Oylegate from 2pm. The Enniscorthy side will feel the absence of Kevin Foley because of an injured hand. The creative black-and-amber attacker MJ Cooper will struggle to get past county minor star Liam Ryan. Casting a verdict of a winner is frustrating but Adamstown’s determination and ability looks a tad too strong.
Ending the Oylegate doubleheader, the Shelmalier’s take on the skilful Ferns brigade. After dismissing Naomh Éanna in the U-21 Roinn 1 Gorey district semi-final on Monday last, John Barron manages his northern side with clever technique as Ian Byrne and Paul Morris exemplify the diligence of the Ferns squad. The Shel’s are equally powerful as Ciarán O’Shaughnessy is persistence in his labour at centre-field. Also for the black-and-amber, keep an eye out for promising minor star James Cash. Nevertheless, the terrific style of Ferns should pay dividends.
‘The Courtyard’ Intermediate Hurling Championship also offers an array of mouth-watering pairings!
The grounds of Oulart should expect a sizeable crowd for their doubleheader this Saturday evening as a tremendous night of entertainment is expected! At 6pm, Blackwater take on Naomh Éanna. The last time these sides crossed paths was in the relegation final of the Intermediate natural grade where the Gorey side plummeted to the new ‘A’ grade by 2 points. Davy Morris’ outfit has a great texture of youth and expertise as Conor McDonald, Eoin Conroy and Darren Kelly excel. Dean Wright is known for his scoring-ability for the Saint’s. The writer’s Gorey-heart might be affecting his mind but either way it’s sure to be an epic battle.
Following that, a hyped clash unfolds as Buffers Alley embark on their first Intermediate outing for around 50 years. Ballygarrett have the undesirable burden of battling the Monamolin side. Andrew Kenny is sure to be on form for the ‘Alley while Ballygarrett have young gun Jack Hobbs. While Seamus Byrne’s men will have great motivation in catching their close neighbours because of general hype, it’s the dogged men of green-and-gold who get the nod.
On Saturday, Camolin has a doubleheader also. The age-old rivals of Askamore and HWH-Bunclody take to the field. Bunclody’s Colm Farrell and Barry Kehoe are superb in slotting over scores while Conor Levingstone and Shane Tomkins are a huge asset of the Askamore men. This one’s nearly too close to call but the determination of Bunclody gives them a slight edge. Throw-in is 2pm.
Afterwards, Duffry Rovers take on Craanford. Brian Clince and Paul Nolan are always a compelling force in attack for the Kiltealy men while Craanford’s James O’Loughlin and Peter Kavanagh work tirelessly. After showing promise in the league stages, Craanford look like they’ll shade it.
Elsewhere, on Sunday Oulart’s second-string meet Geraldine O’Hanrahan’s in Fr Murphy Park, Enniscorthy at 3:30pm. While Jimmy Goggins is known for his dexterity with the New-Ross side, Oulart seem to have the potential to shade victory.
And finally for this week, Farmleigh Park plays host on Saturday at 6pm to the bout of St Patrick’s and Rathgarogue Cushinstown. Cushinstown’s Ollie Bolger and Camolin’s Tommy Dunne equally pose as forceful for their respective sides. Yet the good form of Rathgarogue Cushinstown should prevail bringing the spoils southwards.
Each clash should be intense as Championship of 2013 sets off at a riveting pace!
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