Wow! What a weekend…
Between a full list of Allianz Football League games, a couple of Allianz Hurling League quarter-finals and the All-Ireland club final’s thrown in there it was quite the St. Patrick’s weekend for the GAA.
The drama started early on Saturday as two games fell victim to the lovely Irish weather. The weekend was then rounded off yesterday evening with the meeting of the two best club sides in Ireland.
There is plenty to unpacked following a hectic weekend of sport. Here are the winners and losers from a jam-packed weekend of GAA action.
The Royals are on the brink of Division 1 football for the first time in 13 years after a strong second-half outing saw them overcome Clare yesterday at Cusack Park, Ennis.
The game took place yesterday after originally being postponed due to the weather. Meath led Clare by a single point at half-time and by all accounts were lucky to have done so.
However, they rallied in the second half to take home a valuable two points that should see them over the line.
With Fermanagh falling against Armagh, Meath now sit outright at the top of Division 2 and whilst promotion isn’t yet guaranteed, given their huge scoring advantage it is highly unlikely that they will miss out.
The Galway boys really put the conversation to bed yesterday about who the best team in the country was as they absolutely dismantled Dr Crokes in Croke Park.
It was a performance befitting of back-to-back All-Ireland champions. Corofin had A* performances all over the pitch. Kieran Molly was everywhere, Gary Sice, a genius yet again and Daithi Burke was the best footballer on the park, despite being a hurler.
It was a disappointing day for the Kerry men who just couldn’t live with the reigning champions.
What a night for Mickey Harte’s men. They put in a performance to remember against Dublin, completely taking the game to the All-Ireland champions who seemed to have no answers.
Tyrone executed a gameplan that utilised long direct kick passing towards the full forward line which shocked most onlookers given that the Red Hands have been criticised for not kicking the ball enough.
After the opening three games, Tyrone looked like an outside bet for relegation. Now, after three wins in a row, all of a sudden they could be league finalists if results go their way next weekend.
Mattie Kenny’s side travelled south to Tipperary on Saturday for their Allianz Hurling League quarter-final and came away with a famous victory against all odds.
A fantastic couple of weeks for the Dublin hurling squad who also topped Division 1B despite the presence of Galway and Waterford.
An All-Ireland winning manager in his first year of management. All hail King Henry.
Such an unlucky season for Cavan, similar to their last Division 1 campaign.
The Breffni men were sent crashing back down to Division 2 following defeat against their neighbours and rivals, Monaghan, at Clones on Saturday.
Cavan most certainly go down fighting, their performances have been good for the most part of the campaign, but lady luck has not been on their side and yet again they find themselves falling down the ladder.
Mickey Graham’s side must pick themselves up now as they take on Monaghan again in the opening round of the Ulster championship.
The revival didn’t last too long for Cork. A win against Tipperary two weeks ago gave the Rebels a Division 2 lifeline, however, they failed to back up that performance as they fell at home to a resurgent Donegal side who have now put themselves back in the promotion frame.
Cork aren’t mathematically gone just yet, however, it’s difficult to see how they get out of this one with one game left against Armagh.
It was all going so good for Fermanagh, they were undefeated and on the brink of Division 1 football, however, defeat to Armagh has left their promotion dreams hanging in the balance as Donegal leapfrogged them into second place with one game to go.
Fermanagh have to travel to Meath now and hope that the Royals slip up which is unlikely given that Meath are also on the brink of promotion.
Rory Gallagher’s side live in hope that Kildare can do them a favour next weekend by taking Donegal out of the race.