Familiar faces square off again in hurling decider

GAA: Mayo SHC Final

Old foes face off again: Ballyhaunis and Tooreen will renew their rivalry in the senior county hurling final on Sunday.

Old foes face off again: Ballyhaunis and Tooreen will renew their rivalry in the senior county hurling final on Sunday.

The Mayo hurling fraternity will be out in force on Sunday afternoon, when the latest chapter in one of the greatest battles of the ages is written in east Mayo. The meeting of these two near neighbours in the county decider has become an annual event in recent times, with the hosts on Sunday having the upper hand in recent years. Tooreen may be the grandaddies of the game in the county with 27 titles under their belts, but Ballyhaunis are most certainly the team of this millennium, having won all of their 10 titles since 2002.In that time span they have put together a three-in-a-row run and more impressively a five-in-a-row sequence stretching from 2008 through to 2012. The team that stopped them making it six-in-a-row was, of course, Tooreen who claimed their first title in 10 years in 2013 with a memorable 4-10 to 1-6 win in Ballyhaunis.

Last year when both sides met once again in the final, it was Ballyhaunis who left Tooreen the victors thanks to a 1-12 to 1-10 hard fought victory, which was played out in front of a crowd north of 2,000 people packed tight to the sidelines in Tooreen, adding a real carnival atmosphere to the game. If Sunday's encounter is anything as good as that, it should be something special again. The main event which takes place at 2.30pm is preceded by the meeting of Castlebar and Westport in the B final which will throw in at 12.30pm

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