Eoin Brennan casts his eye over the intermediate football championship semi-finals taking place on Saturday
O’Curry’s v Corofin
at Cusack Park, Saturday 1.30pm
Amazingly it’s nine years since O’Curry’s and Corofin locked horns in a championship tie.
Bbut while their paths haven’t directly crossed, their seesaw journeys have been eerily similar having both won intermediate titles in the past decade and thus only dropping from the top flight in recent seasons.
Following their 2012 intermediate success, the hammer finally came down on O’Curry’s senior adventure with the five team culling of 2018, with Corofin amazingly avoiding that wide trapdoor, only to fall the following season.
Favourites to bounce straight back up, Corofin failed to take their chances in last year’s decider against St Joseph’s Doora/Barefield and consequently will be gunning to make amends this time around.
This is also a golden opportunity for O’Curry’s to make a major breakthrough as with every passing season at intermediate level, their senior memories and standards fade.
However, in terms of firepower, the triumvirate of the Cahill brothers Gearoid and Diarmuid alongside the returning Jamie Malone could edge a tight contest.
Kilfenora v Kildysart
Miltown Malbay, Saturday 1.30pm
We have a repeat of the 2016 Intermediate decider that had to go all the way to a replay before Kilfenora prevailed.
Kildysart have already exacted revenge in the quarter-finals two years ago and again in the group decider of this year’s championship only six weeks ago by 2-9 to 0-10.
So while Kilfenora have been to the heights of senior and back, being Kildysart’s sixth consecutive semi-final appearance, they will know this road better than anyone left in the championship.
Kilfenora have had a mixed campaign but it was their experience that ground out victory over newcomer Banner last time out and they will again throw everything at Kildysart who have been burdened by the growing weight of expectation on their shoulders in recent seasons.
Bidding for a fourth final appearance since 2016 and backed by a greater strength-in-depth, Kildysart should still be able to secure a fifth successive championship victory of the campaign over a much more inconsistent Kilfenora.