Mallow is the venue this Sunday for the Munster Club Football quarter-final between County champions Newcastle West and Cork kingpins Nemo Rangers.
The winners of this tie will move into the semi-final to play either Dr Crokes or Austin Stacks of Kerry.
This is Newcastle West’s first venture into the Munster championship since 2015 when they were defeated by Clonmel Commercials of Tipp who would go onto clinch the Munster title.
In that game, Newcastle led by four points with five minutes remaining but conceded six on the trot to fall to defeat.
The West Limerick side are yet to contest a Munster final not to mind win the championship while their illustrious opponents are the most successful side in the country, winning a record sixteen Munster championships and seven All-Ireland titles.
As such few have given the Limerick side any chance of progression to the last four but after seeing both sides live numerous times this year, there is reason to believe that Newcastle can upset the odds.
Newcastle manager Mike Quilligan echoes that sentiment and is looking forward to the occasion.
“These are the games you want to be playing. These are the reason why the boys train all year, to represent your county.
Like any other game, we’ll turn up on the day and worry about ourselves and see how it goes.”
While in recent years, Newcastle could have been blamed for adopting a highly negative style of play, 2019 has seen a more attacking gameplan based on power running and accuracy of kicking.
Quilligan noted this saying each of his players have a wealth of football ability in their locker, with his team in the Munster quart-final on merit.
“They’re all able to play football. From 1-30, everyone of them can play football to be honest with you. They are a young team, basically we have only been together this year and they have really played beyond their years. I think this team have a massive amount of improvement left in it.
We genuinely aren’t going down on Sunday to make up the numbers. We’re going to give it our best shot and hopefully come out the right side of it.”
Newcaslte have a number of standout players in Iain Corbett and Jamie Lee but Quilligan is hopeful someone else can step up to the plate to help his side to an unlikely victory.
“I would say everyone will have to stand up on the day, as is with any final or any championship game. They will have plans made for certain individuals and someone else will have to come up to the mark on the day.
That’s the difference between winning and losing, the day someone else stands up, you win. It will be all hands to the pump on Sunday.”
At their first venture into the Munster championship since that loss to Commercials, amending the wrongs from that day is key for Newcastle with no room for regret come Sunday evening.
“We’re looking forward to this. Four years ago when we played Clonmel I felt like we left it after us. But it’s all about belief. You have to show teams respect but no more than any other team. You’re going out to win a game and its man for man. You’ve got to go out and represent your county.
Go out and make sure you have no regrets coming off that field.”