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Preview: Carlow Football Championships Round 2

Kevin Regan
August 31, 2023

We should've cashed out after Eire Og beat Kilbride in the IFC! That's if we had laid down a few bob in the first place!

Up to that we were 9/9 in the prediction stakes across Senior, Intermediate and Junior A.

Ballinabranna started the blink, followed soon after by Palatine Juniors and Tinryland Seniors!

All good things must come to an end I guess, and if we ever have a week like that again we will be going well!

So lets have a crack off the Round 2 games!


Junior A Championship Group 1 first and at 6.45pm Leighlinbridge will once again have home advantage against a high flying Fighting Cock's side fresh from their big win over the Blues.

The great Sean O'Brien at full forward accounted for 0-4 in that game, but the forward line is stacked with Mattie Dowling and Alan Quigley no flat tyres either in the scoring stakes.

Leighlin laboured over Tinryland's second string and this game here will test them big time. I think it will be close and we may well have a Draw.

The other game in this group sees Tinryland at home to O'Hanrahans at 7.30pm. Make no mistake about it, this Tinryland second string are a good side. There is a lot at stake here and The Blues will certainly not want to face further adversity; they simply need to win. But I think Tinryland might.

There's a game in Group B of the Junior A Championship also at 7.30pm with Ballon home to Palatine. Pal had a big win over St Mullins, with Ballon equal on that front in disposing of Old Leighlin. Ballon to edge this.

Intermediate Group 2 next and a 7pm start in Netwatch Cullen Park for Naomh Eoin and Clonmore.

This would once be classed as a bruiser, but I'm not so sure this will be the case in modern terms. For Naomh Eoin they must find form. They were dreadful against St Patricks. Clonmore nearly lost it late on to Grange but hung on for the win. I think Clonmore might just have enough here.

The second game on Thursday night in Dr Cullen is a Senior Football Championship Group 1 encounter between Mount Leinster Rangers and Fenagh.

Rangers raised a few eyebrows by taking a point off Tinryland having scarcely picked up a football. Fenagh couldn't find a way through the Bagenalstown blanket apart from Sean Murphy's powerful direct line running.

Fenagh won't have to worry about swarm defences here and it might just suit them. But can they hold out the likes of Chris Nolan, The Fitzpatricks, Byrnes etc?

Don't forget that Fenagh have real quality footballers just like MLR and if Craig Wall and Jack Treacy were to return they may have a squeak here. Fenagh marginally.


Lets start with Dr Cullen again and another double header. First up at 7pm it's Intermediate Group 1 and the all winners clash of Ballinabranna and Eire Og.

In spite of what I said last week, I had forgotten how much quality Ballinabranna still have at their disposal. This youthful Eire Og side is decent but I think Ballinabranna will win this.

The Second game sees us back to Group 1 of the Senior Football Championship with Tinryland taking on Bagenalstown. I don't envisage this being a shootout or a classic, but it will be compelling game given how both teams set up.

It will be a case of who makes the most of the counter attack as that's how both sides tend to do most of their damage. I think this might end up a Draw.

Back to Intermediate Group 2 and at 7.30pm in the Training Centre, you can expect to see a cracker as St Patricks take on Grange.

Grange were desperately unlucky not to salvage something from their game with Clonmore, while St Patricks' looked the business against Myshall.

I liked what I saw from the Tullow men and although I think Grange have the capability to turn them over, it's St Patricks for me here this time around.

One last game on Friday see's Junior B fav's Asca up against Clonmore at 7.30pm out Hacketstown direction. Asca will be hard bet in this grade.


At 6pm in Netwatch Cullen Park it's Intermediate Group 1 action once more as Kilbride take on Kildavin/Clonegal. Both teams go into this having lost their first games.

Kilbride won't shy away from their neighbours here and if it becomes a battle it will be something that could play out in their favour. I just think Kildavin/Clonegal might have a bit more scoring power to win it.

At 7.30pm the second part of the double header sees Eire Og up against Rathvilly in Group 2 of the Senior Football Championship.

Eire Og seemed to be far from their best in Round 1 despite winning, while Rathvilly impressed many with their win against Palatine.

Rathvilly have enjoyed the better of the previous few Championship tussles with Eire Og and the thoughts of losing to them three times alone would be enough to sicken the Eire Og lads. Traditionally when Eire Og get tipped, Rathvilly rip up the script! But Eire Og get the nod by a nose this time.

Junior Football Championship 'A' Group 2 next and the meeting of Old Leighlin and St Mullins at 6pm in St Mullins. I tipped the home side last week and they got hammered. I do think they will win this one however. St Mullins it is.


Junior Football Championship 'B' Group 1 - Ballinabranna GAA vs Fenagh in Ballinabranna. Then in Group 2 Bagenalstown host Kildavin/Clonegal and Eire Og host Rathvilly. All those games start at 12pm.

One last game but by no means least is the Senior Football Championship Group 2 clash of Old Leighlin and Palatine at 6pm in Netwatch Cullen Park.

Champions Pal seemed to lose their way late on to Rathvilly and that will bug them. Old Leighlin will be annoyed over the constant disregard of their chances of progression around the county. I think this is the game where Old Leighlin could sneak a win.