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It is uncharted waters for Connacht this weekend when they head to England with a place in the Heineken Cup quarter-finals up for grabs. This final pool three fixture at the home of current premiership leaders on Saturday (1.35pm) will decide which of the two teams finishes as runners-up and with it a spot in either the Heineken quarter-finals or the Amlin Cup. Toulouse, with an away fixture to Zebre, are almost guaranteed top spot, but it is all to play for at Allianz Park where favourites Saracens are 5/1 to reach the final of this most prestigious club competition.
The Mayo county board has ratified the appointment of former Limerick u21 hurling manager Leo O'Connor as Mayo hurling coach. O'Connor joins the Mayo hurling management team with fellow Limerick man Christy Phillips (manager) and Austin Kenny (selector) from Mayo champions Tooreen.
Hurling folk in both Westmeath and Carlow have been left bitterly disappointed after their joint proposal for a new 14-county top-tier structure for the Allianz hurling league was defeated last Saturday at a meeting of the GAA’s Central Council by the narrowest of margins.
The Galway Hurling Supporters’ Club and Bus Eireann will provide a bus to Thurles on Sunday for supporters wishing to travel to the Allianz Senior Hurling semi-finals with Dublin v Tipperary at 2pm followed by Galway v Kilkenny at 3.45pm.
By Colm Gannon
They may not be the current kings of the game, but the thought of getting one over Kerry is something that supporters from every other county still relishes. On Sunday in Elverys McHale Park, Mayo will start their Allianz National Football League campaign looking to give those there in support of the green and red that very same satisfaction come full time, and set themselves up nicely to retain their division one status at the very least.
Mayo GAA could be on the lookout for a new county secretary this morning. At an executive meeting last night it was expected that current county secretary, Kevin O’Toole, would have offered his resignation from the role to the executive. The Tourmakeady clubman who took over the position at the 2011 convention from Séan Feeney had previously served in a number of roles including PRO for the county board. O’Toole had been one of the driving factors behind the Cáirde Mhaigheo season ticket and supporters club which has been a big success since its inception last year.
The Galway hurlers head to Tullamore this Sunday to take on Dublin (2.30pm) knowing that it is one of the most important games they will play this season.
Allianz Business to Arts Awards is calling for nominations for the 21st annual Allianz Business to Arts Awards. Applicants are encouraged to share their stories and successes and to join the prestigious list of winners which represent the very best models developed in partnership between the corporate and cultural worlds in Ireland.
If you are a Castlebar based Mayo supporter and are planning on following the fortunes of James Horan’s Mayo side through all seven rounds in division one of the Allianz National Football League, the first leg of the 1,050 mile, 11 week odyssey will get under way tomorrow. There is no short away jaunts for Mayo this year as the league will take them on the road to Portlaoise, Armagh, Ballyshannon, and Tralee, two of those games, the trips to Laois and Armagh, to be undertaken on a Saturday night. While it looks like a daunting number of miles for those who are lucky to live close to the county town, you can add on another 400 miles for those hardy Gaels who hail from Belmullet who will follow the fortunes of the green and red.