St Michael’s v St James Saturday 6pm Pearse Stadium

This is a very attractive championship fixture and the city rivalry between the two sides should get a good crowd into the stadium on Saturday evening.

St Michael’s were unfortunate to go down to Killererin by a single point, 1-11 to 2-7, in the first round. It took the introduction of Nicky Joyce to turn the game the champion’s way and Michaels were justified in feeling that some of the crucial decisions did not go their way.

That is in the past and they will look to full-back Alan Glynn, goalkeeper Robbie Hannon, midfielders Patrick Regan and Cian McLafferty, and forwards Barry Moran, David Tierney, Frank Daly and Conor Hoctor to lead the way against St James. Michael’s will not be able to call on two of their key men over the past few seasons, Greg Rogan and Eddie Hoare, due to injury, and will have to look to others for inspiration.

If Galway minor star Shane Maughan is available, it would be a big boost to their chances of victory. With no wins from their three league games to date in division 1B, they badly need a win on Saturday to try to get their season back on track.

St James looked a tired outfit in their heavy defeat to Claregalway, 1-17 to 1-9, and they will need their three county players, Paul Conroy, Johnny Duane and Eoin Concannon, in tip-top form on Saturday evening if they are to advance. Team manager Seamus Burke will also look to Mark Kelly, the tireless Sean Donnellan, Alan O’ Donnell, Tommie Walsh and the O’Connell brothers to provide the spark for a win.

The sides met in Mervue in the league in March and James won by one, 1-11 to 1-10. There is not likely to be too much between them Saturday evening either. The bookies agree and Mulholland’s have Michaels at 5/4 and the Jimmies at 4/5. The draw is 6/1 and is not beyond the bounds of possibility.

St James can shade it.

Silke’s call: St James

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