Hurlers at full strength for Down




Christy Ring Cup Semi-Final

Roscommon v Down in Iniskeen (Co. Monaghan) on Saturday at 3 pm


Roscommon hurlers face the long trip to Patrick Kavanagh country on Saturday to take on Down in the Christy Ring Cup semi-final (throw-in at 3 pm).

  A year ago Roscommon would not have been looking forward to this game but such has been the transformation in the fortunes of the team, a win is a distinct possibility and it will not be a shock if Ciaran Comerford’s men qualify for the final. Put simply: if Roscommon play to the standard that we have seen so far this year it will take a very good team to beat them.

  Ciaran Comerford was looking forward to the semi-final when he spoke to People Sport on Tuesday.

  “We will have everyone available after last weekend. We have no additional injuries so we will have everyone fit and ready for selection.

  “Down are a good side with a few excellent hurlers and the Sands brothers are in good form so it will be a very competitive game. But we have been playing well and it will take a very good team to beat us at this stage. Our lads have worked very hard this year and we will be giving it everything. It’s a pity that the venue is not more central but it is an excellent pitch in Iniskeen and we are looking forward to the game,” he said.

  Down are a formidable side and last weekend they demolished Donegal, scoring 7-22 in the process, with brothers Daithi (3-3) and Eoghan (3-2) Sands both scoring hat-tricks. They will have to be watched closely by the Roscommon defence.

  But Roscommon have plenty of good players too. Padraig Kelly is an excellent leader in attack with Cathal Dolan in marvellous form from the placed ball. Further back Shane Curley, Pat Nolan, Hugh Rooney and Eamon Flanagan have all been playing well.

  The bookies’ odds slightly favour Down but I for one will not be one bit surprised if Roscommon are not preparing for a Croke Park appearance come 5 pm on Saturday evening. It would a great achievement and one that is certainly not beyond them.


Prediction: Roscommon