On Sunday in MacHale Park – Galway club champions Corofin put their provincial and All-Ireland club titles on the line when they take on Mayo champions Ballintubber (2pm ).
Corofin hit 4-22 in their facile win over a poor Clann na nGael outfit in their provincial semi-final win in Hyde Park and will not have learned too much from that outing.
Ballintubber are managed by Kevin Johnson who will know Corofin inside out as he was also involved with Mountbellew in the past - hit a good tally of 3-11 in their nine point win over the Leitrim champions in their semi-final, however they only managed 0-6 in their arm wrestle with Tourlestrane in the quarter final.
Corofin are going for a record ninth title on Sunday and a third consecutive title after wins over Castlebar Mitchels in 2017 and St Brigid’s in 2016. They last faced Ballintubber in the Connacht final in 2014 in a game they won with a bit to spare.
Corofin team manager Kevin O’Brien will look to big displays from the usual suspects with massive experience under their belts such as Kieran Fitzgerald, Ronan Steede, Gary Sice, Liam Silke, and the Farragher brothers. The younger brigade such as Dylan Wall, Kieran Molloy, and new recruit this season, Dylan McHugh, will also be expected to produce big performances.
Ballintubber will look to star player Diarmuid O’Connor, who has been in sparkling form in the past few months, to dominate around the middle, and up front they will need his brother Cillian to be incredibly proficient from both play and frees.
Former Mayo star Alan Dillon still needs watching too, however Corofin should have the men at the back to nullify his influence. It is likely that Ballintubber will play a defensive game in order to frustrate the Corofin attack and try and catch the Galway men on the break.
However, after what they learned in the Galway county final when they were very lucky to get a draw and in the subsequent replay, Corofin should have both the experience and tactical nous to break down the Ballintubber rear-guard.
It is unlikely to be a game for the purists, however Corofin should have the firepower and experience to get the win.