The news that Ronan McGarrity suffered a hairline fracture to his jaw in last weekend’s round of club championship fixtures cast a shadow over the whole round of games last weekend. The Ballina midfielder was forced to leave the action after only a couple of minutes and it looks like he will miss out on next weekend’s Connacht final against Galway which will be a massive blow to Mayo’s chances of dethroning the current Connacht champions in their own patch.
On the football front last weekend a number of things became clearer for a few sides thanks to the second round of games in the group stages. Definitely through to the knock out stages are Ballintubber, Shurle-Glencorrib, and defending county champions Ballaghaderreen who each have four points from two games. In section one of the senior championship, Charlestown are currently on top on three points. Most observers would have expected them to book their place in the last eight with a win over Garrymore, but the south Mayo men managed to hold them up for a draw. Charlestown are now sitting one point clear of both Castlebar and Aghamore who are level on points thanks to the Mitchels win over last year’s intermediate champions in Castlebar. When the final round of games come around, the Mitchels would have to be fancied to see off Garrymore while Charlestown should have enough to beat their fellow east Mayo men to book their spot.
Section two is where all the excitement will be on the final day. Ballinrobe are definitely out of the running, with Crossmolina ahead of Knockmore by a solitary point on scoring difference and level on points in the table. Crossmolina’s win over Ballina the last day leaves the Stephenites having to beat their near country neighbours on the last day of group games if they are to have any chance. With Ballinrobe already out of the running, Crossmolina should see them off and make their way through with whoever comes out of the battle between Ballina and Knockmore.
Section three is home and hosed, Ballaghaderreen and Shrule -Glencorrib are level on points on the top of the table with a score difference of plus 24 in favour of Ballaghaderreen. Both sides will meet to sort out who finishes top of the table. The other two sides, Breaffy and Burrishoole, will meet in Breaffy to sort out who wraps up their championship run for the year and who will be involved in the dreaded relegation play off.
Ballintubber managed to hold off a sticky Moy Davitts challenge to book their place in the last eight, leaving both Moy Davitts and Kiltaine battling it out for the last spot to join them. The Foxford men will be hoping that Ballintubber do not take their foot off the gas against Kiltaine since they are already through as they take on Claremorris for two vital points.
There is plenty of interest left in the intermediate championships when the group stages wind down in a few weeks. Kilmaine are through at the top of group one with two wins from two, while Killala and Tourmakeady are locked on two points each trying to make the break through. Tourmakeady should see off Hollymount in the next round, while they will be hoping that Kilmaine do not take a break as they host Killala in the same round.
Things are very tight in section two with both Belmullet and Davitts on top with two points each after only one game and Swinford also two points but after two games. The one thing that looks a certainty in this group is that Crossmolina B are out of the reckoning. Westport are through after their win in Bonniconlon last weekend in section three with two wins from two, as are Achill. The real interest on the last day of games will be the meeting of Ballyhaunis and Bonniconlon to see who makes the drop to the relegation play off.
Section four sees Kilcommon topping the tree with two wins from two, and both Mayo Gaels and Louisburgh meeting on the final day for what is sure to be a right battle for the last spot in the Quarter-Final.