It’s a busy day of Laois club hurling action with no fewer than five championship games down for decision across the county.
We look ahead to games and will be live blogging from the four venues later today.
Laois SHC – Abbeyleix v Borris-Kilcotton
In O’Moore Park at 6.15pm
The first game in O’Moore Park sees the bookies pre-championship favourites Borris-Kilcotton come up against an Abbeyleix side without a win from their two games.
Borris-Kilcotton got their campaign off to a great start with a win over champions Camross but disappointed in their next outing when they went down badly to Clough-Ballacolla.
Abbeyleix have lost to Ballacolla and Camross but they still maintain a chance of going through – if they beat Borris-Kilcotton in this game and Camross either draw or beat Ballacolla or if they can improve their scoring difference enough in this game in the event of themselves, Camross and Borris-Kilcotton finishing on the same number of points.
Abbeyleix did well for the first half against Ballacolla and for the first 40 minutes against Camross. To have a chance here they have to go for the full game.
Borris-Kilcotton have more scoring power, though, and will be keen to bounce back from their last outing three weeks ago.
They should have enough.
Laois SHC – Camross v Clough-Ballacolla
In O’Moore Park at 7.45pm
It’s hard to see a scenario playing out where Camross will be out of the championship. They’d need to lose badly here and for Abbeyleix to have a big win over Borris-Kilcotton.
A side chasing a three-in-a-row are unlikely to allow it come down to that even if they haven’t set the world alight in either of their two games so far.
Clough-Ballacolla are already through and a win would assure them of a semi-final place. They could do with a win over Camross too having lost two league finals, a league semi-final, a county final and championship group game to them in the last two seasons alone.
Willie Hyland is back from suspension for Clough-Ballacolla and Mark Dowling is back from his travels for Camross.
With bigger battles ahead you could expect a bit of shadow boxing here. But perhaps Ballacolla can continue their winning form and go straight through to the last four.
Laois SHC ‘A’ – The Harps v Shanahoe
In Colt at 6pm
A win for The Harps here will put them straight through to the quarter-finals. A win for Shanahoe coupled with a win for Rosenallis over Slieve Bloom would mean it would come down to scoring difference but that The Harps, Shanahoe and Rosenallis would all be through to the knockout stages anyway.
The Harps should be a level up.
Prediction: The Harps
Laois SHC ‘A’ – Slieve Bloom v Rosenallis
In Mountmellick at 6.30pm
Slieve Bloom have struggled badly with the loss of Ben Conroy and while John Lennon will be serving the first game of a two-match ban, Rosenallis should have too much.
Rosenallis to win and get a quarter-final place, Slieve Bloom to have a relegation battle against Clonaslee in two weeks time.
Laois JHC ‘A’ Semi-final – Park-Ratheniska/Timahoe v Portlaoise
In Trumera at 6pm
While it’s in the lowest grade, arguably the most interesting game of the evening is in Trumera when Park-Ratheniska/Timahoe meet Portlaoise’s second team in the junior semi-final.
It’s the biggest game for Park/Timahoe since they came together but they should be strong enough to book a first county final appearance against the eventual winners of Castletown and The Harps.