For the third time in recent weeks, Newmarket Celtic will face Janesboro from Limerick. This time they meet in the semi-final of the Munster Junior Cup at Carew Park on Sunday at 2pm.
Their first meeting was in the quarter-final of the FAI Junior Cup, a tie played at McDonogh Park in Newmarket where the visitors were 1-0 winners. On Sunday last, Janesboro crashed out of that competition when they suffered a 4-1 loss to Sherrif FC from Dublin at the semi-final stage.
The County Grounds in Doora was the venue for their meeting in the Munster Champions Cup final two weeks ago and here again, the Limerick side took the honours, the score this time being 2-1 after the Clare champions were in the lead.
There was little between the sides in both games, so Newmarket supporters are confident the tables can be turned this weekend.
Celtic have a few injury worries going into this tie with doubts about the fitness of Eoin Hayes, Colin Smith and Alan Brigdale, while they will be keeping their fingers crossed that work commitments will allow Stephen Kelly to take his place in the team. Brigdale and Hayes were forced out of hurling league games last weekend with their clubs, Crusheen and Newmarket.
Janesboro manager Shane O’Hanlon will be hoping his charges will bounce back from last weekend’s disappointment of losing in the FAI Junior Cup and he will be looking to Stephen Walsh, Aidan Hurley, Stephen Bradley and John Tierney to inspire the side.
Newmarket will be looking to Paddy Purcell, Eoin O’Brien, Dave McCarthy and Niall Quinn to provide leadership. Another close contest is expected and while Janesboro retain the favourites’ tag, Newmarket could well take the spoils on this occasion.
The draw for the Prego Menswear Clare Cup quarter-final was made at this weeek’s delegate meeting and threw up a possible clash of Avenue United A and Newmarket Celtic A, the holders of the title.
Both have yet to get to the last eight, with Avenue facing Burren United this week, while Newmarket Celtic have to make the journey to play Kilrush Rangers on a date to be confirmed.