Kevin Cassidy

KEVIN CASSIDY: Ulster club is the gift that keeps on giving

THE second weekend of Ulster Club action took place last weekend and yet again the competition came up trumps.

I’ve said on many occasions that this is the best competition in the GAA calendar at the minute and, based on last weekend’s evidence, who would argue with me?

We will start with the Saturday night game as I was a little disappointed with that one if I’m being totally honest. The game was slow and methodical and took a while to get into any sort of rhythm.

I have watched Trillick on a number of occasions and we used to play them from time to time in friendlies when we were operating at that level.

They are comfortable playing a slow-paced game but if you want to go for a shootout they are more than willing to go there.

Cross, on the other hand, traditionally play open expansive football with lots of kick passing forward but what we got on Saturday night was a shift away from that.

To me, they if that’s the road they want to go down, it will take them a few years to master it. Now don’t get me wrong, they did still try and kick pass forward but their build up was too pedestrian for most of the game.

For a team to perform like they did in the second half, it’s clear that they have some tough decisions to make over the winter in terms of their playing style.

We will go to Cavan next and what a win for Glenties when you consider the situation they found themselves in. Naomh Conaill were very good in the first half but Gowna came roaring back at them in the second and deserved the win but at this level you need to stay switched on until the final whistle.

When they sit down to look at that game after the winter break, they will be kicking themselves over how they dealt with that last ball into the square.

From a Glenties point of view, a lot of people are saying they are blessed to get out with the win. Okay, yes they had a slice of fortune, but I give them great credit for putting themselves in that position of being able to snatch it at the death considering how good Gowna were in the second half.

They now have a mouth-watering clash with champions Glen next week and it’s one they will relish.

The shock of the weekend came as Scotstown knocked out hotly-fancied Kilcoo. I did write here last week that with the addition of Jack McCarron Scotstown were now a little closer to being the finished article.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I still expected Kilcoo to win so massive credit to Scotstown for pulling off the win. Kilcoo were decent but they failed to put any real daylight between them and towards the end of the game, I thought they sat back too much and invited Scotstown onto them and they paid the price for doing so.

Everyone is talking about the Rory Beggan score and rightly so as it was a massive kick, but, for me, the Kieran Hughes score was much better. That was a pressure kick because if he missed they were out, and not to mention it was on the wrong side for a left-footed free-taker.

Scotstown march forward but for Kilcoo there will be a lot of pondering done over the winter months.

We are all looking forward to next weekend’s action as we have another two fantastic games to look forward to in this fantastic competition.

Receive quality journalism wherever you are, on any device. Keep up to date from the comfort of your own home with a digital subscription.
Any time | Any place | Anywhere


Gaelic Life is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
Registered in Northern Ireland, No. R0000576. 10-14 John Street, Omagh, Co. Tyrone, N. Ireland, BT781DW