A CLASSIC city-west Cork county senior football championship round 3 tie between the holders, St Finbarr’s, and Carbery Rangers should swell the attendance in Bandon on Sunday at 3pm.
That they’ve met in the past two seasons and Ross are coming off the back of a gripping extra-time win over Castlehaven adds even more intrigue to a game that has a quarter-final place as the main prize.
The Barrs are aiming for a hat-trick of wins over the 2016 champions, having won the last couple of semi-finals by three points last year and three goals in 2017.
They opened with a 3-12 to 0-6 victory over Clyda Rovers, when Eoghan McGreevey, Colm Keane and Alan O’Connor scored the goals.
And the Barrs added the Rochestown Park Hotel Division 1 league to their county with a 3-17 to 2-10 win over Cill na Martra with Enda Dennehy, Adam Lyne and Colm Scully netting.
The Togher club lost midfielder Eoin Comyns to a hamstring injury early on and Cork’s Sam Ryan is already a long-term absentee with a serious version of the same.
Cork skipper Ian Maguire again leads the Barrs with county colleague Steven Sherlock their chief scorer and plenty of experience throughout the team.
The big question for Ross is how quickly they can recover from the gruelling exploits from a week ago.
Confidence won’t be an issue and the availability again of Cork U20 All-Ireland winner, Mark Hodnett, is a big plus in a team, where James Fitzpatrick, Alan Jennings and the Riordans, Jerry and James, play major roles.
John Hayes, John O’Rourke and captain Brian Shanahan fired 1-15 between them a week ago to reflect their scoring potential. It will be very interesting.
There’s another west Cork derby between O’Donovan Rossa and Clonakilty in Castlehaven tomorrow at 3.30. Skibb overcame Carrigaline by 2-12 to 1-8 and Ballincollig by 0-12 to 0-10 with Kevin Davis contributing a dozen points.
Clon defeated Newcestown by 2-9 to 0-9 in round 1 with a team containing five Cork players, the White brothers, Mark and Sean, who scored 1-1, Tom Clancy and Liam O’Donovan from the seniors and Maurice Shanley, an U20 All-Ireland winner.
Midfielder Timmy Anglin also chipped in with 1-1 in a side which had Clancy at centre-back and Sean White and O’Donovan named in the half-forward line.
The pair squared up in a relegation play-off in 2017 with Clon winning by 2-11 to 1-9. It’s going to be even closer.