Injury woes for St Michael's but Éire Óg at full health for PIFC final

Injury woes for St Michael's but Éire Óg at full health for PIFC final
Éire Óg's Colm O'Callaghan is fit to face St Michael's. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

ÉIRE ÓG report a clean bill of health, but it’s more injury woe for St Michael’s ahead of their county premier intermediate football championship final at Páirc Uí Rinn on Sunday at 2pm.

Colm O’Callaghan, who didn’t play in the semi-final win over Bantry Blues, is fit again, according to manager Harry O’Reilly, who has a full deck from which to select.

St Michael’s, who already lost Niall Cashman to a cruciate knee ligament injury, will be missing midfielder Andrew Murphy.

He suffered a serious hamstring injury during the warm-up to last week’s emphatic semi-final replay win over Kanturk and had to be stretchered off.

The Mahon club received a timely boost with the juniors scoring seven goals in their first-round county junior win over Kilworth in mid-week with Liam Grainger bagging a hat-trick. They followed up by beating Ballymartle on Saturday to reach the semi-final against St James.

And with their third team already through to the county junior B final, it’s clear St Michael’s are on the rise.

O’Reilly is a great admirer of the premier intermediate grade.

“It’s the best club competition around because all the teams are so evenly matched and are capable of beating one another on any given day.

“And our campaign reflected that, losing to Cill na Martra, when we were missing a few players.

“Then, we needed extra-time to get over Aghada and were seven points against Newmarket before rallying in the last 20 minutes.

“We played very well against Ballingeary and then the semi-final against Bantry Blues was a great game for the neutral, but not for us on the sideline because it swung one and then the other,” he said.

There’ll be few secrets going into a game in which both sides are very familiar with one another, having met several times in recent years.

“We know each other well and there’s never much in it. I expect it to be the same again on Sunday.

“There’s a great buzz in the area. The local schools are having a red and yellow colours day and there’s bunting up all over so there’s a great buzz. Hopefully, we’ll get a big crowd on Sunday.”

The prize for the winners is a place in the Munster club intermediate semi-final against either the Kerry champions, Templenoe, or the Waterford winners, Modeligo or St Saviours. That will be played on November 17.

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