Provincial final for Ballagh, All-Ireland semi for Charlestown

As we make our way through the gloom of November, the GAA pickings are slim enough in these short days and ever lengthening nights. But the club scene – driven to the margins by the demands of inter-county action for much of the year – is a veritable hive of activity at the moment and two clubs from the county scored notable successes in championship matches over the weekend.

Charlestown should never, of course, have found themselves plying their trade at Intermediate level but they’ve certainly made the most of their shock demotion from the top tier, which occurred just two years after their third ever senior county title win in 2009. Having bounced back to senior at their first attempt this year, Sarsfields now have their eyes on a possible All-Ireland title, having dispatched Sligo’s Bunninadden in Saturday’s provincial decider on a 0-14 to 0-8 scoreline. I’ve no idea who they’re likely to face in the All-Ireland semi-final early in the New Year but you’d have to fancy them to have a right good lash at landing a national title at this stage.

Meanwhile, senior champions Ballaghaderreen were in action today when they faced Sligo champions Curry in the Connacht semi-final at McHale Park. This one was evenly enough matched up until half-time but Ballagh took more or less complete control in the second half and with their opponents reduced to fourteen men the Mayo champions went on to record a convincing 1-15 to 1-7 win, with Barry Regan contributing 0-8 of that total. A video analysis of today’s match by Emmet Ryan of Action81.com is available here.

Although Ballagh now find themselves just three matches away from possible All-Ireland glory, their next test is a very big one as they’re set to face defending Connacht champions St Brigid’s in the provincial decider. The Rossie lads got the better of Galway champs Salthill-Knocknacarra by a comfortable enough margin of 0-15 to 0-8 at Pearse Stadium today. The Connacht final between Ballaghadereen and St Brigid’s has been scheduled for Sunday fortnight (25th) at McHale Park.

Finally, congrats to that grande dame of Mayo ladies football, the peerless Cora Staunton, who on Saturday evening picked up her eighth All-Star award. A fantastic achievement by the finest ladies footballer of her generation, well done to her.

7 thoughts on “Provincial final for Ballagh, All-Ireland semi for Charlestown

  1. HUGE shout out for my own parish kiltane who are U21 champions having beaten shrule yeaterday by 8 pts although shrule did take them to extra time.

  2. Well done to Charlestown and Ballagh and to Kiltane U21s. When Ballagh decided to play football in the second half they blew Curry away. If they play like that St. Brigids will have it all on in two weeks time but they need to play for 60 minutes. James Kilcullen and Barry Kelly are a formidbale midfield pair. They would make a starting place on a lot of county teams. James Horan could do worse than have a look at them (particularly Kilcullen) for 2013. He is one tough competitor.

  3. Would be great if Ballagh could win Connacht, it has been too long for Mayo to win Connacht.
    Delighted that Kiltane won u21, much needed boost after relegation, my home club also even though it was not today or yesterday that I donned the blue and gold!

  4. Charlestown are good enough to go on and win the All Ireland i think they face the Ulster champions next. Wouldn’t get carried away by Ballagh win over Curry, Sligo teams have been poor in the Connacht championship the final against the defending champions (going for three in row) is a big step up in class. Ballagh are solid outfit they will fight like tigers however with some key players out through injury i think the final will be bridge too far.

  5. I was in Castlebar on Sunday and was very impressed by the adjustments made by Ballagh as the game wore on. The next step is undoubtedly tougher but, having finally watched Brigid’s and Salthill/Knocknacarra last night, it’s not unthinkable. Ballagh will present a much more organised defensive front that the Galway champions and should get opportunities to make use of Barry Regan’s free-taking abilities.

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