Gorts make a welcome return in IHC

Andersonstown Social Club Intermediate Hurling Championship

Gort na Móna finally enter the fray in the Intermediate Hurling Championship tomorrow when they take on Cloney Gaels Ahoghill at Enright Park. The Turf Lodge men have been shut down for a couple of weeks now because of a Covid case in the club, though not directly involving the hurlers as far as I am aware, but it can’t be an ideal way to prepare for a championship match. The last competitive game of hurling they played was back on July 22nd when they lost out to Tir na nOg in the league down in Randalstown by 3-17 to 2-13.

Sunday’s opponents Cloney Gaels come into the game with a six point win over Oisins under their belts in the opening round of games two weeks ago. The Ahoghill men were in top form that day and though they went into the game as outsiders they again proved what a resilient bunch they are by putting on a great display to record a 1-17 to 0-14 win. A draw on Sunday will be enough to see them through to the semi-final but they face a tough task against a Gorts side that were county junior champions just two years ago.

The Gorts other game against Oisins, which was postponed due to the Covid lockdown at the club, has been rescheduled for Wednesday evening (Aug 26th) in Waterfoot.

In Group 1, which was labelled the ‘group of death’ before the start of the championship, Carey Faughs are through to the semi-final with six points, after wins over Creggan and Sarsfields. These two meet tomorrow at the Bear Pit knowing that a win may not be enough to get them the best loser place as the fourth semi-finalist. Creggan have a six point deficit and the Paddies are five in arrears ,so one of them would need to have a big win to stand any chance of taking that much sought after fourth place.

In Group 2 Tir na nOg and St Brigid’s Cloughmills go into their final group game, both with a win over Armoy under their belts, and are in the strange position that a draw would probably take them both through. Of course with Group 1 still up in the air because of Gort na Móna situation nothing it certain but a draw in Randalstown tomorrow would rule out Creggan and Sarsfields, who can only end with two points at most.

However if one of them were to win convincingly, and Cloughmills or Tir na nÓg win by three points, the loser will have two points and a zero points score difference.

If it sounds crazy and hard to understand that is because it is the craziest system ever introduced for a knock-out championship.

Good luck to all involved tomorrow……and to all who have to work it all out.  

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