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Calling the shots: GAA Previews

Declan Bogue

By Declan Bogue

ALL-IRELAND CLUB HURLING SEMI-FINAL

CUSHENDALL v ST THOMAS' (Today, Parnell Park, 3.00pm)

Ruairi Og are simply carrying too many injuries that they are holding back from the public gaze to be warm favourites for this. The input of Dinny Cahill with their camp means that they will know St Thomas' game inside out, but at this stage it looks a tall order. Perhaps picking challenge matches against the second-tier hurling counties may work in the favour of the Galway club.

VERDICT: St Thomas'

ALL-IRELAND CLUB INTERMEDIATE FOOTBALL FINAL

ST ENDA'S v KILCUMMIN (Today, Croke Park, 4.45pm)

The fairytale run for St Enda's culminates in their first ever visit to Croke Park.

On one level it is a fantastical story and there is tons of romance.

On the other, it seems like it will take something out of the ordinary to beat Kilcummin, who are beneficiaries of the way Kerry grade their Championships.

VERDICT: Kilcummin

ALLIANZ FOOTBALL LEAGUE

DIVISION ONE

ROSCOMMON v TYRONE (Tomorrow, Dr Hyde Park, 2.00pm)

Tyrone looked for all the world a team that is undergoing a heavy block of winter training when they played Mayo last weekend.

Despite having a full-forward line of Darren McCurry, Lee Brennan and Peter Harte, they are clearly struggling for scores and when you take out Harte's points (as a makeshift forward) and goalkeeper Niall Morgan's point from play they are averaging a point from play every 50 minutes.

Against a Roscommon side that conceded just 0-13 against Monaghan, there is no guarantee that things are going to get better in the short-term either.

VERDICT: Roscommon

MAYO v CAVAN (Today, Castlebar, 7.00pm)

Mayo and their attitude towards the National League could be the story of the spring.

In James Horan's previous reign they never seemed all that bothered but with a number of young Turks putting their hands up they have delivered two very sturdy performances to date.

Cavan don't have the quality to live with them and they will do well to stay in this division, making it four consecutive years they have been relegated or promoted.

VERDICT: Mayo

MONAGHAN v GALWAY (Tomorrow, Inniskeen, 2.00pm)

After starting the season with a huge win over Dublin, Monaghan were perhaps caught napping in one of the games they would definitely have been taking for granted.

Roscommon are more organised defensively and Galway will be an upgrade on that, but Malachy O'Rourke's side will prevail. They should give more game time to the likes of Conor McManus.

VERDICT: Monaghan

ALLIANZ FOOTBALL LEAGUE

DIVISION TWO

FERMANAGH v KILDARE (Today, Brewster Park, 7.00pm)

Kildare certainly have the power runners to trouble Fermanagh, but a soft pitch and that home record could spring a surprise here. Despite their low tallies, Fermanagh have been getting the chances, but their conversion rate is awful.

VERDICT: Fermanagh

TIPPERARY v DONEGAL (Tomorrow, Semple Stadium, 2.00pm)

Long way to Tipperary, but Donegal should return with the win.

VERDICT: Donegal

MEATH v ARMAGH (Tomorrow, Navan, 2.00pm)

Armagh have looked a cut above most teams for long periods of time in this league, but have been prone to monumental lapses of concentration.

They should hold out here for the win though.

VERDICT: Armagh

ALLIANZ FOOTBALL LEAGUE

DIVISION THREE

DOWN v WESTMEATH (Today, Newry, 7.30pm)

It took a late goal from Caolan Mooney to get Down out of the blocks against Sligo, but there is no guarantee they will get anything here.

VERDICT: Westmeath

ALLIANZ FOOTBALL LEAGUE

DIVISION FOUR

WATERFORD v DERRY (Tomorrow, Fraher Field, 12.30pm)

Two wins from two for Derry so far, beating Antrim in a tight encounter on the opening day before comfortably edging London aside.

It's a long journey ahead for them, but they should be returning up the road with full points.

VERDICT: Derry

LEITRIM v ANTRIM (Tomorrow, Carrick on Shannon, 2.00pm)

Lose this and Antrim's season could be all but finished up in a meaningful sense in the second weekend in February. It's a tall order against the form side of the league.

VERDICT: Leitrim

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