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Squads feeling heat over fixtures backlog

By John Campbell

The fall-out from the delayed Donegal football championships continues to impact on other competitions.

St Eunan's were crowned senior championships but their demanding itinerary of fixtures within a short time-span contributed to their Ulster club semi-final eclipse by Omagh St Enda's.

And Donegal intermediate champions Cloughaneely endured an even more traumatic experience when, having beaten Derry title-holders Castledawson in the provincial quarter-final just 24 hours after winning their county crown, they lost to eventual Ulster champions Warrenpoint at the semi-final stage.

Urris, too, found the heat in the provincial junior club final against Tyrone outfit Rock too much to bear after they too had been forced to play too many games within a truncated spell.

Now Donegal will not, after all, be represented in the Ulster club minor tournament currently being hosted by St Paul's, Belfast.

Instead, the Donegal final between Gweedore and Dungloe will only take place today, the same day on which the county's champions, had they been crowed, were due to meet Burren in the quarter-final of the provincial competition.

Burren now get an automatic bye into the last four in which they will meet the winners of tomorrow's last quarter-final between Crossmaglen Rangers and Southern Gaels. Cavan side Southern Gaels overcame Tyrone minor champions Moortown St Malachy's last weekend and they will go in against Crossmaglen full of confidence.

Also tomorrow, the final of the Ulster Minor club hurling competition will take place between Down champions Leitrim Fontenoys and Derry representatives Slaughtneil Emmets.

It has been a memorable year for the Slaughtneil club and their minors' path into tomorrow's final suggest that they have the scent of success in their nostrils.

Belfast Telegraph


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