Kilmeena march on, Knockmore bow out

Photo: Connacht LGFA

Two Mayo clubs were involved in Connacht Championship action this afternoon. Knockmore, appearing in their first ever LGFA Senior provincial decider, lost out to reigning All-Ireland champions Kilkerrin-Clonberne of Galway while Kilmeena’s men, contesting a Connacht Intermediate Championship fixture for the very first time, had a decisive win over Annaduff of Leitrim.

Knockmore were always going to be the underdogs this afternoon at Swinford, facing a team that was aiming to secure their sixth Connacht title on the trot. By the tenth minute, it was already clear that the Mayo champions were under the hammer, as their Galway opponents found the net for the first time.

From then to half-time, though, Knockmore did well to keep in touch, with five points between the sides at the break. On the resumption, however, Kilkerrin-Clonberne reeled off five unanswered points to double their lead and, in effect, put the result beyond doubt.

A second goal for the Galway team then stretched their lead further. That one provoked a response in kind, however, as Amy O’Connor found the net for Knockmore. That was their final score of the game, though, as Kilkerrin-Clonberne added two further points to seal victory and the Connacht title by 2-15 to 1-7.

At Hastings Insurance MacHale Park, meanwhile, the new Sweeney Cup holders Kilmeena were involved in a veritable game of two halves against Leitrim’s Annaduff. The West Mayo lads looked in bother midway through the first half, as they trailed by five points and they went into the break two points in arrears.

Whatever honeyed words manager John Reilly had for his charges in the confines of the dressing room obviously did the trick as Kilmeena emerged an entirely different proposition after the break. While Annaduff added just a single point to their tally (and that was from a late free) in the second half, Kilmeena tagged on 4-13 to blow their opponents away.

Caolach Halligan, whose 1-1 in the recent county final was instrumental to that win, weighed in with 2-4 after the break, while Jack Carney and Niall Feehan also had the umpire reaching for the green flag before the finish. Kilmeena won today by 4-18 to 0-8 and Michael Gallagher’s match report for the Mayo News is here.

Next up for Kilmeena is an IFC provincial semi-final against Galway’s Monivea Abbey. That game will be played at Tuam Stadium next Sunday, where throw-in is 1.30pm.

The best of luck to Kilmeena in that one and commiserations to Knockmore on their defeat today, after what has been a year of real progress and no little success for them.

17 thoughts on “Kilmeena march on, Knockmore bow out

  1. As always WJ, thanks for your comprehensive coverage of all things Mayo GAA. Well done to Kilmeena, they’re on a journey which could take them into the history books, it’s probably too much to expect but it would be an incredible achievement if they could go on and win the All Ireland intermediate final.

    Hard luck Knockmore ladies, it was always going to be a tough challenge going up against the All Ireland champions. I’m sure they tried their best.

  2. @Plunkett..Not sure he has the pace for senior intercounty. He’s a big old fashioned front man who 30 years ago definitely would have featured but it’s extremely difficult to make any meaningful impact at top senior level unless you have pace or are really talented. With respect to him, he’s had a solid campaign with the club but it’s very hard to tell if he would have it for Mayo (that’s even if he’s eligible or even wants to play). From what I’ve seen, I think a top defender at senior county level would keep him quiet more often than not. Maybe I’m wrong but I don’t think I am. Stick himself and Aido in on the edge of the square;)

  3. I have to laugh at this, a guy scores 2-4 and is not considered good enough to be even though of as an intercounty prospect, maybe he would be better that what is currently there, they have had plenty of chances and just can’t get goals or enough scores, well time to move on.

  4. What’s even more laughable is someone scores 2-4 and is immediately being called into the county team. We live a good hype train in Mayo if any player shows a bit of form.

  5. Ah lads, performing during a second half thrashing of Annaghduff is hardly a dress-rehearsal for inter county football. Kilmeena came through eventually for a huge win but what was that first half all about? On midwest radio I didn’t get the impression that conditions were the reason. Would love to know from anyone that was at the game.
    Knockmore ladies will learn an awful lot from yesterday’s result and will come back even stronger.

  6. Andy Moran scored 3-3 in his final game for ballagh last year at 38, we hardly expect him to get a call up to the senior team on the back of that ?

  7. @BatetheBlankett…Now, I’m laughing. I didn’t say he shouldn’t be considered. I did say that I didn’t think (but was open to correction) that he had the attributes to break into a senior Mayo team and gave my reasons why. As others have rightly pointed out, scoring heavily in one match should not be a defining factor in assessing a players ability. You have to look at their performances over a period of time and also take into account the level they are playing at. With respect to Annaghduff, they probably wouldn’t win the Mayo junior championship. If the Mayo senior management decide to take a look at Halligan then good luck to them and him. I’d love if he turned out to be really strong at senior level in a Mayo jersey, but taking everything into account I’d be surprised if it happened. Pleasantly surprised.

  8. Maybe this is the problem, guys not being considered at Senior County level if playing for an intermediate or Junior club in Mayo.

    Guys hitting the net regularly in games are worth considering, let’s not be over thinking and trying to guess how a guy might fare out against defensive teams before looking at him.

    I don’t know anything about the Kilmeena set up, but to go from Junior and now intermediate as they have done tells me they must have special footballers there.

  9. I have been a huge advocate of Divisional teams for years so I fully agree with not enough junior/intermediate players being involved with Mayo. Divisional football gives players in weaker or smaller clubs the platform to improve by competing at a higher level. It brings them on. Gives great initiative for players from these clubs to aspire to represent Mayo at senior county level. Let’s fact it, if you are with a smaller club and haven’t played for Mayo by the time you are 18 then the chances of you doing so are very slim. How many have slipped thru the net? Many I am sure of it. A token effort of divisional teams was introduced a while back but as I said, it was token. Until Mayo GAA introduce this back in then I would always question their genuine commitment or strategy in maximising the player pool in the county.

    Kerry do it…..enough said.

    Of course, guys hitting the net regularly are worth a look. I don’t think anyone is over-thinking but it would be very weird if you hadn’t some opinion of a player before they trial for Mayo. That just doesn’t make sense. Any manager/selector is analysing guys when they watch them. That’s what determines whether they’ll be brought in to the Mayo senior set up.

  10. Really is annoying seeing posters write off potential players before they have seen them get there chance with Mayo.
    What frustrates me more are players who have been there for a number of seasons now and are in there mid to late 20s and still havnt delivered for Mayo in the big names., think its pretty clear who these players are.But still always seem to be favoured by management.These are some of the same names who didnt deliver v Tyrone in 21, Kerry in 22 and Cork and Dublin in 23.

  11. I don’t know much about Hallinan and whether he has the potential to make it at inter county level, but he certainly should’nt be judged on one performance against sub standard opposition, but rather on his overall club performances. What age is he? If he, like others, has attributes that indicate potential, he should be given a chance in a wider development squad and given the benefit of coaching, strength and conditioning, nutrition etc to see if he to see if he is worth a try at county level. It has been mentioned that he lacks pace and, while pace is a big asset in all field sports, it is is not the be all and end all and there have been many top performers across all sports who were not blessed with pace-Cillian is no speed merchant and he hasn’t done too badly. The great Paul Mc Grath wasn’t the quickest from A to B, but he did’nt start at A. I think it was Brian Clough who said about one of his players that “he is deceptively slow. . @Mayonaze.I completely agree that a structure involving Divisional teams should be looked at and maybe tried for at least a few years. I think it would have many benefits-it would give Junior/intermediate players the chance to play at a higher level and test themselves against better opposition, which should improve them and give county management a better opportunity to assess them. The system seems to work pretty well in Kerry, altho’ it may need to be tweaked down there,as, ironically, it is coming in for criticism at the moment from some senior clubs. I certainly think it is worth a try.

  12. Hallinan has been a standout player for kilmeena this season. Right now he is a good club player with potential, but his game has to go to another level a bit like Darren Quinn at Garrymore. But they deserve full intensive training on county panel before they can be adjucated upon.
    Divisional structures? What does it mean, would it lead to mismatches?
    The only positives from this years championship is that the larger towns are coming to the fore. Might lead to a group of players from the one club coming through

  13. On the ditch does a group from one club lead to a better county team? Or what’s the advantage for it do you think?

    Wouldn’t see the benefit myself, bar a bit of familiarity early doors. In reality the county players have very little club interaction once county sets up for the season, which is soon for 2024. The club v county game be bit of craic at Christmas.
    The lads who have done well in club should be given a good run and see what happens. Several players on panel this year that didn’t have a great county or club campaign should they be given more time than these lads in league and preseason?

  14. Yes I think it’s an advantage having several players from the one club on county panel. They will push each other, socialise, travel together have banter and have a better understanding of each others game. I expect Castlebar may be the team to produce a number of county players in the next year or two and it will be to mayos advantage.
    Management have some tough calls as to who they add to the panels. We can just hope that players will benefit from the sharpening up that training with county panel will give them.
    Sorting CHB will be vital to our chances imo

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