The Draw – Club Championship 2008 – who plays who

Senior Championship Draw The 2008 Roscommon SFC draw held last night (Wednesday) certainly threw up some very interesting groups and there is no doubt that Group D featuring St. Brigids, Strokestown and Castlerea St. Kevins is the real ‘Group of Death’ with one very high profile team certain to lose out before the quarter-final stage. However every group will be interesting and remember two teams will emerge from each group to contest the quarter-finals. Group A Padraig Pearses, St. Aidans, Elphin.  Prospects: Pearses have flattered to decieve over the past few years. They have played really well until they reach the knockout stage every year. They will be hoping to go at least one better this year. St. Aidans have a very young team and were very unlucky to lose to Roscommon Gaels last year by a point. Their local derby game with Pearses will be the crucial game here. Elphin are another team who have great potential and if they can get all their players fit they are a match for anyone. This will be a very tight group. Verdict: A very hesitant vote for Elphin and Pearses to emerge. Group B Roscommon Gaels, Kilmore, St. Dominics.  Prospects: Another tight group in prospect here. The Gaels have a good number of young players but they may lack a little in physique and experience. Kilmore are doughty championship battlers and are almost unbeatable on their own pitch. St. Dominics are new to this level although they will not be fazed by their two opponents. Verdict: A shaky vote again but Roscommon Gaels and Kilmore should be good enough. Group C St. Faithleachs, Western Gaels, Clann na nGael.  Prospects: St. Faithleachs have been in the last two finals but have a new manager this year. I like Western Gaels and they could be the dark horses this year. Clann na nGael will be much improved under Enon Gavin but they have a lot of ground to make up.  Verdict: St. Faithleachs and Western Gaels to make it to the last eight. Group D St. Brigids, Strokestown, Castlerea.  Prospects: This will be a mouth-watering group and anything could happen. Brigids are a class side and if they are up for it they will certainly take one quarter-final spot. Strokestown pushed them all the way last year but Castlerea have a lot of talent and if they play on the day they are as good as anyone. Verdict: St. Brigids – and a hesitant vote to Castlerea to join them. Intermediate Championship Draw In the 2008 George Bannon Sports Intermediate Football Championship, the teams will compete for the first time for Corn Ui Murrai which is the magnificent cup donated to the county board by the St. Dominics club to honour the late Jimmy Murray.   The seeded teams were: St. Croans, Kilbride, Michael Glaveys and Eire Og.   Kilbride, who were relegated from last year’s senior championship, were handed a very tough route if they want to get back to playing in the senior championship in 2009 as they are in a group with neighbours Tulsk and Boyle.   Last year’s beaten finalists Michael Glaveys should be good enough to emerge from Group C while last year’s junior football championship winners St. Barrys will have to battle it out with St. Michaels and St. Croans. Group A: St. Croans, St. Michaels, St. Barrys.  Prospects: A baptism of fire for St. Barrys but they will fancy their chances of emerging from this group. Croans have threatened to win this championship several times in recent years and they will be keen to give it another lash this season.  Verdict: Croans and St. Michaels should be good enough to qualify. Group B: Kilbride, Tulsk, Boyle.  Prospects: It’s a pity that all these teams are in the same group. Kilbride should be too strong for the other two but then again a lot of people thought they were too strong to be relegated! Tulsk are improving all the time while if Boyle can get their players training and fit they could be a threat. Verdict: It’s very early in the year but I’ll have a stab at Kilbride and Tulsk to emerge. Group C: Michael Glaveys, St. Ronans, Castlerea.  Prospects: On the face of it Glaveys should emerge from this group and St. Ronans should join them. However this Castlerea Intermediate team have a habit of turning up shock results and if they are taken for granted they will  cause an upset.  Verdict: Michael Glaveys and St. Ronans (hesitant vote).  Group D: Eire Og, Fuerty, Shannon Gaels.  Prospects: Eire Og look the strongest team in this group and they should qualify without much fuss. Shannon Gaels and Fuerty will be in a fierce battle to join them. I think the Gaels might be too strong. Verdict: Eire Og and Shannon Gaels. * Top two teams from each group will contest the quarter-finals.  Junior Championship Draw This year the Junior Football Championship will be played on an all-county basis. There are 16 teams