County hurling championship hots up on Sunday

All roads lead to Kenny Park on Sunday afternoon for two captivating county senior hurling semi-finals.

First up in the Salthill Hotel Senior Championship is Craughwell and Gort at 2pm, followed by former All-Ireland club champions St Thomas and Loughrea at 3.30pm.

Craughwell had an easy 1-20 to 0-16 victory over Tommy Larkins in their quarter-final, but they will know championship favourites Gort will be a more formidable outfit, and that they need to improve what they have produced heretofore.

The Gort men had a tough game against last year’s champions Sarsfields in their last eight tie and only came through by four points, 1-16 to 1-12.

It took two late points by Jason Grealish and Keith Killilea to put some clear day light between the sides.

Gort will be expecting big performances from Aidan Harte, Michael Cummins, Jack Grealish, Michael Mullins and free taker Aiden Helebert if they are to reach another county final.

St Thomas v Loughrea

John Burke’s St Thomas played out an epic game with Portumna in their last championship outing and only came through on a thrilling score-line of 2-25 to 4-15.

Their two goals were scored by Darragh Burke and Sean Skehill who lined out at full-forward.

Other key men for them in that gripping win were All-Star David Burke, who notched three points from his midfield berth, and his county colleague Conor Cooney, who ended the tie with 0-11 (0-6 from placed balls ).

Loughrea defeated Mullagh by 0-16 to 0-15 to reach the last four, and they will be looking to Johnny Coen, Gearoid Loughnane, Johnny Maher, Damien McClean, Sean Sweeney, Joseph Mooney and Shane O’Brien to bring the fight to their near neighbours in what promises to be a top-class game of hurling.

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