Tuohy seeking to make Australian Rules final
The Australian Rules season is right down to business now and Zach Tuohy will be looking to reach a first ever Grand Final when his Geelong side take on the Brisbane Lions in what the Australians call the ‘Preliminary Final’ on Saturday morning (Irish time).
Geelong are slight outsiders against Brisbane, which takes place in Brisbane’s home ground, the Gabba Stadium.
The other Preliminary final is between Port Adelaide and Richmond. Tuohy has never featured in a Grand Final and Geelong haven’t played a final since they last won it in 2011.
Kerry’s Tadhg Kennelly is the only Irish player to have ever won a ‘Premiership’ when he was on the Sydney Swans team that won it out in 2005.
Sugrue hoping to make All Ireland U-20 final
Former Laois senior manager John Sugrue is in charge of the Kerry U-20 footballers and they are in action this Saturday when they play Galway in the All Ireland semi-final.
Kerry won the Munster final way back in the spring but the competition will be played out to a conclusion over the next two weekends.
Galway will be without a number of players from county champions Moycullen, who have been deemed close contacts of confirmed Coronavirus.
The other semi-final is between Dublin, who beat Laois in the Leinster final in March, and Tyrone. Both semi-finals are being shown live on TV by TG4 on Saturday.
Laois minor hurlers to feature on TV
Speaking of TV, the Laois minor hurlers are playing Offaly in the Leinster championship on Saturday at 2pm in Birr, which like all games at the moment is being played behind closed doors (though one parent of each player is allowed to attend).
It will, however, be streamed live by Leinster GAA – and can be accessed on this link.
And you can also watch the Laois v Westmeath Allianz Football League Division 2 game on GAA GO.
Laois referees in action
Two Laois football referees will be on the road this weekend to take charge of Allianz Football League games.
The experienced Maurice Deegan is refereeing the Galway v Mayo Division 1 game in Tuam on Sunday while on Saturday, Seamus Mulhare continues his progress on the inter-county scene when he’s the man in the middle for the Cork v Louth Division 3 game in Pairc ui Chaoimh.
Laois managers leave club roles
Two Laois managers with high-profile club jobs outside of Laois have departed their roles this week.
Seamus ‘Cheddar’ Plunkett was over the James Stephens hurlers in Kilkenny for the past two seasons when only the brilliant Ballyhale Shamrocks beat them.
Ballyhale beat James Stephens in the final last year before winning a thrilling semi-final this year on a scoreline of 3-22 to 1-26.
The OurGame.ie website reports today that Cheddar has left the job – but there’s no doubt he’ll have no shortage of offers for the 2021 season.
Arles-Killeen native and former Laois U-20 boss Billy O’Loughlin, meanwhile, has left Sarsfields in Kildare. Sarsfields were beaten in the semi-final by eventual champions Athy.
Worth a read – Liam O’Neill on inter-county season
The very thoughts of more matches being cancelled is probably too much to bear for GAA supporters but former GAA President Liam O’Neill from Trumera said it’s something that the powers that be should be keeping in mind.
In a lengthy interview with The Irish Times this week, he raised concerns over teams “criss-crossing the country”.
“Does it really matter now,” he said.
“I’d love someone to stand back and ask that. Does the intercounty championship really matter? We thought at the start of the all this that it would be terrible to go the rest of the year without an intercounty game but we’ve kind of survived without it.
“I would have preferred if we’d not put that pressure on ourselves. I’m not saying that the intercounty championship isn’t important for many people but the whole effort we’re making is to try and do what we normally do but in unbelievably difficult circumstances.”