SARSFIELDS will take on Douglas in the third round of the Senior Hurling Championship, which means one of the favourites for glory will bite the dust in August.
Sars, backboned by Daniel Kearney, Conor O’Sullivan and Jack O’Connor, are always leading contenders for the Seán Óg Murphy canister and hammered Killeagh back in April. Douglas – led by Eoin and Alan Cadogan and Shane Kingston – have been energised by Shane Brick and Kieran Kingston’s appointment to the management. However, they couldn’t have been handed a tougher tie in their quest to make a senior breakthrough.
Other big games in the draw made at Páirc Uí Chaoimh last night, included St Finbarr’s against Na Piarsaigh, a classic southside-northside joust, and the potential repeat of last year’s county final, with Imokilly taking on the winners of Ballymartle and Midleton.
The divisional powerhouse are gunning for three titles in succession but Midleton lost a thriller to Glen Rovers in round one.
Patrick Horgan and the Glen are paired with Darragh Fitzgibbon and Charleville later in the summer. The Ben O’Connor-coached outfit edged out Erin’s Own after extra-time in a belter in April.
UCC, who took some major scalps in recent seasons, will face Bishopstown. Another draw will be made when the next two phases are completed for the quarter- and semi-finals, which will avoid repeat pairings and also seed the teams that made last year’s semis.
The Premier Intermediate grade is arguably the most even in the entire championship and the backdoor threw up a series of cracking ties. Ballincollig face Courceys, it’s Youghal versus Carrigaline and Cloyne collide with Valleys.
Four clubs received byes into the quarter-finals, Kilworth, Castlelyons, Blarney and Watergrasshill. That will be particularly useful to Castlelyons, given Colm Spillane’s ongoing absence through injury.
The lower intermediate level is labyrinthine given the number of teams involved, though Mayfield and Kildorrery stands out from the second round. Last year’s junior champions Cloughduv will take on Kilbrittain or Dungourney in round three.
ROUND TWO: Erin’s Own v Kanturk; Newcestown v Newtownshandrum; Carrigtwohill v Killeagh; Ballyhea v Bride Rovers; Ballymartle v Midleton.
ROUND THREE: Na Piarsaigh v St Finbarr’s; Charleville v Glen Rovers; Erin’s Own/Kanturk v Ballyhea/Bride; Sarsfields v Douglas; Ballymartle/Midleton v Imokilly; Newcestown/Newtown v Blackrock; Carrigtwohill/Killeagh v Bandon; Bishopstown v UCC.
PREMIER INTERMEDIATE HURLING:
ROUND TWO: Youghal v Carrigaline; Cloyne v Valley Rovers; Courcey Rovers v Ballincollig.
ROUND THREE: Aghada v Youghal/Carrigaline; Ballinhassig/Inniscarra v Mallow; Courcey Rovers/ Ballincollig v Cloyne/Valley Rovers; Fr O’Neill’s v Fermoy.
QUARTÉR-FINALS: Kilworth v Aghada/Youghal/Carrigaline; Castlelyons v Ballinhassig/Inniscarra/Mallow; Blarney v Courceys/Ballincollig/Cloyne/Valleys; Watergrasshill v Fr O’Neill’s/Fermoy.
ROUND TWO: Barryroe v St Catherine’s; Milford v Midleton; Douglas v Ballinhassig; Kilbrittain v Dungourney; Mayfield v Kildorrery; Dripsey v Na Piarsaigh.
ROUND THREE: A1. Castlemartyr v Barryroe/St Catherine’s; A2. Milford/Midleton v Éire Óg; B1. Blackrock v Grenagh; B2. Milford/Midleton v Tracton; C. Aghabullogue v Glen Rovers; D. Dripsey/Na Piarsaigh v Douglas/Ballinhassig; E. Ballygarvan v Sarsfields; F. St Finbarr’s v Argideen Rangers; G. Kilbrittain/Dungourney v Cloughduv; H. Meelin v Ballymartle.
QUARTÉR-FINALS: A1 or A2 v B1 or B2; C v D; E v F; G v H.