SAFC preview: Season on the line for Bishopstown v Knocknagree

Relegated from the Premier SFC last season, the Town can't afford another loss
SAFC preview: Season on the line for Bishopstown v Knocknagree

St Michael's Eric Hegarty being tackled by Bishopstown's David Quaid. Picture: Denis Boyle

IT’S the city against Duhallow in a couple of crunch games in the Bon Secours county senior A football championship.

St Michael’s head to Coachford to play Kiskeam today at 5.30pm and on Sunday at 2pm in Carrigadrohid, Bishopstown try to stop the Knocknagree juggernaut.

St Michael’s began their Group B campaign with a 2-10 to 0-5 win over a disappointing Bishopstown, when Eoghan Buckley and Dan Lenihan bagged the goals and Daniel Meaney and Keith Hegarty claimed 0-2 apiece.

This will be a more challenging encounter, however, particularly as Kiskeam must recover from their 1-13 to 1-5 loss to Knocknagree with only two players, Thomas and Gene Casey, getting on the score sheet.

The Town will have to improve significantly on their opening night showing to have any chance against in-form Knocknagree, who are playing with supreme confidence.

Eoghan McSweeney delivered five excellent points for Knocknagree against Kiskeam the Bon Secours Senior AFC at Boherbue. Picture: John Tarrant
Eoghan McSweeney delivered five excellent points for Knocknagree against Kiskeam the Bon Secours Senior AFC at Boherbue. Picture: John Tarrant

Cork player Eoghan McSweeney kicked 0-5 from play as Fintan O’Connor led the way with 1-3 in direct contrast to the city club, who only managed three points from play against Michael’s.

Group A is finely balanced after O’Donovan Rossa and Bandon drew the first day though Ballingeary’s impressive 2-14 to 1-8 win over Dohenys caught everyone’s attention.

Today, Bandon and Ballingeary collide in Kilmurry at 4pm, where the Gaeltacht club will book a knock-out place by winning for the second time.

Ben Seartan top-scored against Doheys with 0-6, five from play, while Sean O Luasa and Conchur O Loinsigh bagged the goals.

Bandon, once again, showed courage in abundance to salvage a point against Skibbereen, who looked likely winners for the most part.

Michael Cahalane and Mattie McNamara scored the goals and Barry Collins kicked 0-6, including three frees and a ‘mark’.

You suspect they’ll need a great scoring spread to get the job done on this occasion.

Dohenys must improve all over if they are to get any joy from their game with Skibb in Drimoleague on Sunday at 4pm.

Defensively, they will need to be a lot tighter against the likes of the evergreen Kevin Davis, who scored 0-8 against Bandon, Elliott Connolly, Daniel Hazel and Donal Og Hodnett.

Kevin White contributed 1-4 for the Dunmanway club against Ballingeary with Fionn Herlihy adding 0-2 and there was 0-1 apiece from Mark Buckley and Cullan Barry.

It’s a classic west Cork derby and form can sometimes go out the window, but Skibb must be fancied.

Group C brings the winners and the losers of round 1 together on Sunday, when neighbours Mallow and Clyda Rovers clash in Glantane, bidding to secure a second win while it’s Fermoy and Bantry Blues in Ovens, both at 2pm.

Mallow, who are seeking to go one step further this season following their defeat by Eire Og in last season’s final, began with a 0-14 to 1-9 win over Fermoy.

Kevin Sheehan, Sean McDonnell and Michael O’Rourke accounted for 0-11 between them with Cork defender Mattie Taylor also scoring.

Clyda defeated Bantry 0-15 to 1-7 with Eoin Walsh hitting 0-7 and Paudie Kissane again impressing around the middle.

Defeat for Fermoy or Bantry would rule them out of the knock-out phase.

SATURDAY 

Group A: Bandon v Ballingeary, Kilmurry, 4pm.

Group B: St Michael’s v Kiskeam, Coachford, 5.30pm.

SUNDAY 

Group A: O’Donovan Rossa v Dohenys, Drimoleague, 4pm;

Group B: Bishopstown v Knocknagree, Carrigadrohid, 2pm.

Group C: Fermoy v Bantry Blues, Ovens, 1.30pm; Mallow v Clyda Rovers, Glantane, 2pm.

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