Hurlers heading for HQ decider on Saturday

Eoghan Collins with Rackard Cup

Photo: GAA.ie

The sign over the door on the site says that it’s the footballers who are the focus of attention around here but this Saturday the attention rightly switches to the hurlers. This is because, for the first time since 2004, Saturday will see the Mayo hurlers take the field at Croke Park. They play Armagh in the final of the Nicky Rackard Cup, a match that throws in at HQ at 3.30pm.

Saturday’s action features a triple header of hurling deciders. The first one is the Lory Meagher Cup final between Louth and Sligo, which throws in at 1.30pm, followed by our Rackard Cup decider at 3.30pm, with the day’s main event the Christy Ring Cup final between Antrim and Meath getting underway at 5.30pm.

I’m not going to try to bluff you with some second-hand spiel on Sunday’s Rackard Cup decider. I know bugger all about the hurlers but I do know, because I just looked it up, that we’re very narrow favourites (priced at 10/11 with Paddy Power) to land the silverware, with Armagh on offer at evens.

Those tight match odds look fair enough, seeing as the counties’ two meetings this year resulted in a win apiece. Armagh came out on top by 1-17 to 1-10 when they met at the Athletic Grounds in Division 2B of the League back in March while the Mayo lads prevailed by 0-22 to 1-11 in a Round 2A Rackard Cup tie played at James Stephens Park in Ballina at the end of April.

I haven’t the faintest idea how Saturday’s decider will go but I’m looking forward to heading to HQ to catch the novelty of seeing the county’s hurlers in action at Croke Park. And, you’d never know, maybe seeing them lift some silverware too. Best of luck to them in Saturday’s Rackard Cup final.

UPDATE: Details of the team and subs for the final have now been published – here.

20 thoughts on “Hurlers heading for HQ decider on Saturday

  1. Best of luck to the hurlers. Other long standing commitments mean I will not be there to support them but it would be great to see them back in the Christy Ring next year and hurling continue to progress in the county.

  2. Best of luck to the hurlers’ tomorrow mayo by 2 points good days ahead for this panel UP MAYO,!

  3. Good luck to hurlers tomorrow, would be great to see them climbing the steps of the hogan!

  4. i’m going. my Cork born young lads are firmly in the green and red camp when it comes to the big ball, and who knows, the way the Cork hurlers are going at the moment, a win on Saturday might even get them following the green and red for the small ball!!

  5. Can’t wait for tomorrow – here’s hoping we get to bring another piece of silverware back west. Delighted to see Keith Higgins lining out for the hurlers too.

  6. Croker is becoming a home from home for the Green and Red. I never struck a sliotar in anger and know very little about it but remember being mightily impressed seeing the hurlers play in Pearse stadium before a Mayo Galway championship game last year, and I seem to remember a hurling opener before a Mayo Derry game a year or two ago up north. Fair lumps o’men swinging ash around the place.
    Best of luck to the lads, it would be a fabulous achievement for them if they could pull it off.

  7. Thinking about the hurling has me back in sec sch in Galway where hurling and football were very much on a par.Being from Mayo football was the game for me but it dawned on me pretty quickly that the hurling was the serious game even for those who had a competence in both. At break times and other you would always see fellas out for a bit of a puck around ….a bunch in goal and a bunch out the field. I don’t recall ever doing likewise with the big ball which was the norm at home.
    I have to say that in those few years I did get to appreciate the thrill of taking a ball out of the air, rising the ball off the ground, the long low delivery, big solid puck into the distance and all the other little fagaries one would do with a sliotar and a hurl! It seemed those skills were enough in themselves for young fellas to spend hours at of an afternoon or evening.
    So it’s great to see that the game has developed so well in parts of the county and giving enjoyment to so many.
    I wish the Mayo hurlers all the best in their big game v Armagh.

  8. agreed inbetweener, it is a far superior game, much as i love football.
    There is a bit of truth, much as it might hurt in the saying “football is only for fellas who cant play hurling”!

  9. I remember at football training one evening a Connemara man having a great big laugh when he overheard me (a mayo man) talking about hurling to a Cavan man. It’s a magnificent game at the high level, and football only reaches it for me when Mayo are battering the dubs or some other big shot team.

  10. Yes Eastcork….I’d heard that one but had forgotten and I’m partial to the sentiments.Thanks for the reminder.

  11. Will have a couple of freebies for the premium level tomorrow if anyone wants them .

  12. Best Wishes to the Mayo hurling team, reaching the final is a great achievement. I will be there to support them and I am looking forward to it.

  13. All the best of luck to JP COEN and the Mayo Hurling Team tomorrow in Croke Park! Will be their supporting them in Croke Park, looking fw to it!

  14. Looking forward to the trip east tomorrow. Even though it is third tier, it’s an all Ireland final and would be great to make it 2 from 2 this year. In reality, these boys are Christy ring level. They were gutted going down last year after losing to Ros, but they have a chance to put it right, and get a national medal in their back pocket.

    Good luck lads!

  15. Good luck to the lads this evening, if we keep getting teams as often to Croker as this year they may have to extend the Luas as far as mayo.

  16. Best of luck to the hurlers today. With a bit of luck they will get the trophy and continue the growth of the game in the county.
    Is any of the senior football panel apart from Keith Higgins, involved or playing/ ever played the hurling?

  17. @Dave

    Get Caff played hurling for Ballina until they stopped hurling in the senior championship.
    Sean Regan from Ballina is on the hurling team today having played U21 for Mayo in 2014.
    David Kenny has started for the footballers in the league this year and is playing for the hurlers today.
    Cathal Freeman played in the league under Horan is playing today.

  18. Well done our hurlers, fantastic fight and spirit shown in the last quarter coming from behind and closing it out with insurance 4 points to spare, our GAA silverware count for 2016 is now 2 ans we’re only in june yet……………just a mention on our no4 who got his sloitars mixed up on the Armagh no 13 but then that no 13 was faking it to win soft frees earlier and I think our no4 was giving him something genuine to fall down for……………….Great,great spirit and fab win. Higgins is something else but so is all this team. First time watching them and enjoyed it hugely.
    MaighEo Abú

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