It’s semi-final time in the Galway Senior Hurling Club Championship with two mouth-watering games down for decision. Last year’s champions, St. Thomas’, who are chasing an incredible six-in-a-row, face Sarsfields while last year’s beaten finalists, Loughrea, play Turloughmore in a much anticipated double header at Pearse Stadium on Sunday, October 15th.
Loughrea, who haven’t won the senior championship since 2006, topped their group, beating Moycullen, Cappataggle and Kilconieron along the way before victory over Clarinbridge in the quarter-finals.
Turloughmore, who won an incredible six-in-a-row in the 1960s but haven’t won this competition in nearly forty years, finished second in their group this year, beating Joe Canning’s Portumna, drawing against Gort before losing to St Thomas’ in match three. However, they still qualified for the preliminary quarter-finals, where they beat Moycullen before brushing aside old rivals Castlegar in the last eight of the competition.
This first semi-final is a very hard one to call and will be a tough and tight affair, but I expect Loughrea to come through and book their place in the final on October 29th.
In the second semi-final, champions St Thomas’ play Sarsfields.
St Thomas’ finished top of their group, beating Portumna, Gort and Turloughmore, before seeing off the challenge of Cappataggle in the quarter-finals. They are once again the favourites to lift the Tom Callanan Cup this year.
Sarsfields, who last won the trophy in 2015, finished second in their group this season, beating Craughwell and Ardrahan, but lost unexpectedly to Castlegar. They beat Killimordaly in the preliminaries before hammering Oranmore-Maree in their quarter-final.
St Thomas’ to win as they continue their quest for an equalling record six- in a row, but the Cooney’s and Sarsfields will be a handful.
A huge crowd is expected in Pearse Stadium for what promises to be a fantastic doubleheader.
It’s semi-final time as well in the Galway Intermediate Hurling Club Championship, where Sylane take on Ballinderreen.
Sylane, who have spent most of their existence in the junior ranks, finished top of their group, beating Annaghdown, Carnmore and Turloughmore, and continued their good form with victory over Clarinbridge in the quarter-finals.
Ballinderreen, who last won this competition in 2017, finished second in their group, drawing against Tynagh/Abbey-Duniry and losing to Kinvara before picking up full points against Spiddal.
They went on to beat Abbeyknockmoy in the preliminaries before defeating Rahoon-Newcastle in the quarter-finals.
There won’t be much between these two sides, but I expect Ballinderreen to shade it based on their performances to date.
In the second semi-final, Meelick-Eyrecourt takes on Tynagh/Abbey-Duniry in what promises to be another great encounter.
In their group, Tynagh/Abbey-Duniry drew against Ballinderreen, beat Spiddal and Kinvara before booking their place in the semi-finals after their win over Carnmore.
Meelick-Eyrecourt finished top of their group, beating Craughwell, Ballygar Abbeyknockmoy and then Kinvara in the quarter-finals.
Again, this is another tough game to call, but I expect Meelick-Eyrecourt to come through based on their excellent form to date.
Both fixtures will take place in Loughrea on Saturday 14 October. Tickets for all games are available at ticketmaster.com/gaa/galway.