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It might be almost Easter - but the gales that blew through vast tracts of Mayo on Saturday gave the first round of the Mayo GAA Senior Football Championship a more end of the year feel, than the start of the summer.
Trying to accurately sum up everything that happened over two epic nights fo football is not going to be an easy task.
There is no let up for Mayo kingpins Castlebar Mitchels who have another seven day turnaround this week before they take on Sligo champions Tourlestrane in Markieviciz Park in the Connacht Senior Club Championship quarter-final tomorrow at 2pm. Declan O'Reilly's men were in scintillating form in last Saturday night's Mayo senior final when they ran out 3-13 to 0-10 winners over a valiant Knockmore side who ran out of gas in the second half when Mitchels really put the foot down.
When St Patrick's day rolls around Castlebar Mitchels will be hoping they are preparing for a perfect ten out of ten record in championship games in the All Ireland final. The Mayo and Connacht champions have played in and won eight championship games since they opened their account on a rainy Saturday evening in Josie Munnelly Park against Ballaghaderreen early last summer.
Just like in the county final Neil Douglas’ eye for goal was the crucial deciding factor for Castlebar Mitchels on Sunday when they claimed their second Connacht senior club title in three years in Tuam Stadium, in the process they sent the current All Ireland champions packing from the competition.
Two years ago Castlebar Mitchels travelled to Tuam Stadium as rank underdogs against a Corofin side that were expected to see them off with ease and set up a Connacht final with the then All Ireland champions St Brigid's. But football doesn't always go along expected lines and a dogged and fearless Castlebar Mitchels side, who rode their luck at times early on in that game, ground out a deserved victory to kick-start a journey that went all the way to St Patrick's Day.
Next Sunday in Tuam Stadium (2pm) the two best senior club Gaelic football teams in Connacht over the past three years do battle for the Shane McGettigan cup, and the honour of being the 2015 Connacht champions. Corofin are current Connacht and All-Ireland club champions, and they put those titles on the line facing the last team to beat them in championship action two years ago, in Tuam.
Next Sunday in Tuam Stadium (2pm) the two best senior club Gaelic football teams in Connacht over the past three years battle for the Shane McGettigan Cup and the honour of being the 2015 Connacht champions.
Following Corofin’s facile 4-14 to 2-6 demolition of St. Mary’s (Sligo) last weekend at Markievicz Park, and Castlebar Mitchels impressive 3-8 to 0-13 victory over Clann na nGael at Hyde Park, the sides will meet in the Connacht club senior final in Tuam Stadium (2pm) on November 22.
After the start they got, Castlebar Mitchels made it much harder than it should have been as they booked their place in the Connacht Senior Club Final in a fortnights time with a four point win over Roscommon champions Clann na nGael in Hyde Park on Sunday.