Divison One Previews
ARDBOE travel to Gortacladdy this weekend to take on a Kildress side that are coming off the back of a heavy defeat, at the hands of 2009 County champions Clonoe. Johnny McGurk’s reign as manager wouldn’t have went to plan, but he will aim to have his charges ready for the battle of a local derby and try to pick up their first points on home soil. Ardboe meanwhile will try and build on last week’s win over Greencastle, realising early points away from home can be vital come the play-offs at the end of the year.
The Kildress defence must improve immensely, if they are to muster anything from this game, as they conceded a hefty 3-14 last day out and will not find life any easier this week, as they try to curtail the likes of Kyle Coney, the McGuigan brothers and Mick Hagan whom are all very accurate in front of goals. Kildress will look to their chief marksman over the years, Des Tracey, for the bulk of their scores and if Damien Kelly, Phillip Lennon and Frank McGurk play to potential they have the chance to give the Rossa’s a game but come the end Ardboe should see themselves sitting nicely with four points on the table. Verdict: Ardboe
Moortown will travel to Eglish this weekend in buoyant mood, after recording an impressive opening day win over Trillick. The Malachy’s work rate, coupled with a few early goals, seen them over the line and a repeat, gritty performance, will be needed here to come away with the win, as Eglish aim for their first win, having drawing first day out with Derrylaughan. Conall Martin’s return to midfield for Eglish should provide problems, as will the constant running of Brendan Donnelly and Gregory Jordan but With PJ Quinn organising Moortown’s defence, you can be sure they will be giving nothing easy away. Up front it will be left to Ronan Devlin, Brian McClernon and Connor Herron to get the scores again. Eglish may have to wait to their next day out, for their first win, with another draw a very likely outcome. Verdict: Draw
Division Two Previews
Cookstown make the journey to take on a Gortin side, which will be eager for a massive improvement, from their opening day’s misfortunes. Gortin started well against the Moy, exchanging the first six scores between them, with Kevin Mossey scoring all his sides points from frees and shortly after was withdrawing due to injury. Thereafter their challenged faded somewhat, and if Mossey isn’t available come Sunday, they may struggle once again to come up with enough scores to get their first win.
Cookstown will also aim for improvement from their game last week, having only registered five points heading into the last quarter and very lucky to still be in with a shout. Ryan Pickering, Shea McGarrity and Conor O’Hare put in impressive shifts and the same will be expected again if they are to come away with the win. Diarmuid McNulty and Rauri Kennan will help spearhead Gortin’s challenge, and whether or not we see Kevin Mossey could have a huge bearing on the eventual outcome of this game. Verdict: Cookstown
Rock entertain Aghyaran this weekend in their first game at home and after last week’s lucky salvation of a point, they will be keen to get their first win under their belt. After last year’s near miss of promotion for Rock, they know how important it is, to be picking up all two points on home soil. Connor McCreesh was their hero last week, weighing in with an impressive eight points and he is going to need his brother Martin, Niall Mullan and indeed the rest of the team to pull out their best performance if they are to cause an upset.
Aghyaran, showing no sign of a Martin Penrose hangover, disposed of Loughmacrory with minimum fuss, in their first game, with Michael Anderson, Anthony Devine and Adian Connoly all to the fore for the victorious Davog’s. There is no doubt Rock have the players to get their first win, and it will take a massive performance from everyone, but in the end Aghyaran should head back North with two points secured. Verdict: Aghyaran
Pomeroy Plunkett’s will relish the challenge of the visitors Moy this Sunday as both sides aim to build on impressive opening day victory’s. Pomeroy’s win away to Galbally raised a few eye brows, as they sent out an early warn sign, as a team to watch in the coming months. Ollie McCreesh and Justy McCaffery impressed in their win over Galbally and will aim for a similar return on the scoreboard come Sunday.
Pomeroy’s defence will be set up to curtail the Cavanagh brothers, Sean and Colm, with Sean contributing six of his sides score against Gortin and with him nearing back to full fitness he will take a lot of watching. Ryan Mellon, Hugo Mackle and Peter Mallon can turn a game for the visitors and with their emphatic victory last weekend they are giving the nod to make it two from two.
Stewartstown welcome Urney to Mullaghmoyle this Sunday and after an opening day win on their travels, to Killeeshil, they will aim to make it two wins on the spin. They will be aware of the chances they squandered last week, and will aim to improve in this sector and as long as they can get a good supply of ball into Gareth Devlin and Peter Armour then they are always in with a shout.
Urney fought from five down last week against Augher to take the lead going into injury time, only to concede a late equaliser and they will be keen to avoid any more early disappointment here. Johnny Lafferty, Fergal McNulty and Fran McMeel will lead their charge, and come Sunday afternoon they should have two points to go with the already captured one point from last week. Verdict: Urney