Group Stages of Limerick SFC reaches their conclusion this weekend with everything to play for.
With so much to play for heading into the final round of group games in the Limerick Senior Football Championship. Matt O’Callaghan talks with Sporting Limerick about his predictions for the weekend.
Fr Caseys v Na Piarsaigh
Sunday August 20 @7pm in Croagh
After a highly impressive victory against Drom in the last round, Fr Caseys head into the game full of confidence. Currently sitting on 4 points, Caseys know that a win should be enough to secure qualification to the knockout stages. Na Piarsaigh on the other hand know that if they better Rathkeale’s result then they will retain their senior status as they lie one point ahead of Rathleale.
Matt: “I think Fr Caseys have the momentum… I think they will just about edge out Na Piarsaigh in this one”
Adare v Rathkeale
Sunday August 20 @7pm in Askeaton
Last seasons Intermediate Champions have secured safety in the championship after a brilliant display against Monaleen last time out. Victory over Rathkeale may see them through to the knockout stages but survival must have been the goal at the start of the season. Rathkeale on the other hand are currently bottom of the table and need to better Na Piarsaigh’s result to have any chance of avoiding a relegation play-off.
Matt: “I think they (Adare) may just shade it. I give Adare a cautious vote to win it.”
Drom-Broadford v Monaleen
Sunday August 20 @7pm in Bruff
After performing so well in the opening three rounds Monaleen could only manage a draw last time out against Adare. Monaleen are the only side that is currently qualified for the knockout stages and a win this weekend would see them straight through to the semi final. However, should Drom pick up the win, then they would move above Monaleen and into the semi final spot. A loss could be detrimental to their cause as Caseys and Adare could overtake them in the table.
Matt: “Monaleen will start as favourites. It may be against the form line but I certainly wouldn’t rule out Drom Broadford winning this one.”
Group 2 is more complicated with anumber of possible permutations. No team is guaranteed of their progression to the knockout stages, with Ballysteen the only team that cannot qualify for the quarter finals. Newcast
Ballysteen v Ballylanders
Friday August 20 @7pm in Ballyagran
The only game of the round to take place on Friday sees relegation threathened Ballysteen take on Ballylanders who are in a precarious position. If the East side win, they are almost guaranteed a quarter final spot unless, there is a draw in the other games. Lose and they are into a relegation play-off decider. For Ballysteen it is simple. Anything other than a win will see them fall into a relegation play-off.
Matt:”It’s nearly too close to call. I actually wouldn’t be surprised if Ballysteen won.”
Oola v St Patricks
Sunday August 20 @7pm in
With both sides level on four points, there is all to play for these teams. Neither is in danger of a relegation play-off spot so both will be out to secure a coveted quarter final spot. Oola picked up a surprising victory over NCW in the last round whilst St Pats were simply too strong for Ballylanders in the previous round.
Matt: “I have a hunch that St Pats may edge this one. Again it’s another one that’s very hard to call, the stakes are high
St Kierans v Newcastle West
Sunday August 20 @7pm in Bog Garden
These West Limerick rivals are deadlocked at the top of the group on 5 points after neither side could pick up a victory in the previous round. Newcastle hold the advantage in terms of scoring difference but the winners here will qualify for the semi-final spot regardless. A draw may be enough for both sides to progress. A loss for either may see them fail to qualify for the knockout stages.
Matt: “If Newcastle west can go hung-Ho for 50 or 60 minutes like they did in the first two games then I think they will shade St Kierans.”
You can hear Matt O’Callaghan’s full predictions and preview on the link below. For some of the most insightful GAA writing locally, you can read Matt in the Weekly Observer (Wednesday) and Vale Star (Thursday) each week.