Now hurlers target Christy Ring Cup place

Roscommon hurlers will have to get back down to earth quickly as they face neighbours Mayo this weekend in a game that will decide who will play in the Christy Ring Cup competition in 2016.

  The game is in Pearse Stadium in Galway on Sunday at 1.45 pm.

  The memories of that sensational win in the Nicky Rackard Cup final in Croke Park are still fresh but there is an equally big prize at stake in Salthill on Sunday.

  If Roscommon hurling is to progress then they have to aspire to play and compete in the Christy Ring Cup.

  Mayo will be very tough opponents. They have been operating at a higher level than Roscommon over the past few years in league and championship and they will be desperate to maintain their status and they will have a huge following there to roar them on. Make no mistake, Roscommon will have to play to their very best to beat them on Sunday.

  Roscommon manager Justin Campbell says that this game is as important as the one that his side played in Croke Park last Saturday.

  “We have no injuries since the final but there are a few lads who had holidays planned for this week so we will have to see what will happen there. Hopefully we will have a full panel again.

  “This will be a very tough game for us. We played Mayo in a challenge game last year and they won by five points and this year we played another challenge and they won by one point so there is not a lot between us, but they are a very strong side.

  “It is very important that we win this game for the development of Roscommon hurling. We need to step up to another level now. They can’t take away the All-Ireland medals that we won last weekend but it is very important that we win this game.

  “I’m delighted that the game is in Pearse Stadium on Sunday. It is a good way to promote the game, to have it before the big football match. There will be a big Mayo crowd there so hopefully the Galway crowd will get behind us. If we can get focussed and play to our potential we are well capable of winning it” he concluded.

  Mayo will be without their best player and talisman Keith Higgins, who will be lining out of the Mayo footballers, but they have some excellent players like Aiden Connolly, Declan Gallagher, Kieran McDermott, Kenny Feeney, Stephen Hoban and Sean Regan.

  Roscommon will once again be relying on the players who were so influential last weekend like Peter Kellehan, Ian Delaney, Liam Kilcline, Micheal Kelly, the Kilkenny brothers, Johnny Moran, Jerry Fallon and Adrian Murphy.

  It is a tall order for Roscommon who will have to get their heads right for this very important match. However Justin Campbell and his backroom team have done a wonderful job with this Roscommon team. They are very fit and if they adopt the correct mental approach to the game there is no reason why they cannot win it.

  Prediction: Roscommon.