Home Sport GAA Previewing today’s Laois football and minor hurling games

Previewing today’s Laois football and minor hurling games

Inter-county action resumes around the country today after a seven month enforced Coronavirus shutdown.

The Laois senior footballers and minor hurlers are both in action at 2pm today and here we will take a more in depth look at both games.

Allianz National Football League Division 2 Round 6 – Westmeath v Laois 
In TEG Cusask Park at 2pm

Team News

The Laois footballers last played seven months ago against Kildare and their team shows eight changes from that day.

Out of the team come Gearoid Hanrahan, Sean Byrne, Damien O’Connor and Colm Murphy who are no longer on the panel while Sean O’Flynn, Paddy O’Sullivan, Eoin Lowry and Ross Munnelly don’t start either.

In to their places come Eoin Buggie, Colm Begley, Mark Barry, Brian Byrne, Diarmuid Whelan and Gary Walsh – along with Gareth Dillon and Alan Farrell who joined the panel in recent weeks having not been previously part of it.

It will be a first senior start for Ballyroan-Abbey forward Whelan.

Laois: Niall Corbet; Trevor Collins, Mark Timmons, Robbie Pigott; Alan Farrell, Colm Begley, Eoin Buggie; Kieran Lillis, John O’Loughlin; Gareth Dillon, Mark Barry, Brian Byrne; Diarmuid Whelan, Evan O’Carroll, Gary Walsh

Westmeath’s last game was a seven-point defeat to Roscommon and they have made five changes

Out of the team go Anthony McGivney, Killian Daly, David Lynch, Denis Corroon and Callum McCormack with Jack Smith, Jamie Gonoud, Paddy Halloway, Lorcan Dolan and Kieran Martin replacing them.

Westmeath: Jason Daly; Jack Smith, Ronan Wallace, Boidu Sayeh; James Dolan, Kevin Maguire, Jamie Gonoud; Ray Connellan, Sam Duncan; Luke Loughlin, Ronan O’Toole, Paddy Halloway; Lorcan Dolan, John Heslin, Kieran Martin

What’s the recent history between the sides?

This is the fourth meeting between Laois and Westmeath in the last 16 months.

Westmeath won both league encounters last year – including the Division 3 final in Croke Park.

But Laois edged them out in the most recent meeting which was last year’s Leinster quarter final in Tullamore.

How did the two teams get on in the earlier rounds?

Laois and Westmeath have an almost identical record with two wins, a draw and two defeats each to both sit on eight point – and both have a -8 scoring difference.

Laois drew with Roscommon in their opening game and then beat Armagh to get off to a good start. They then lost to Cavan, beat Clare and lost to Kildare.

Westmeath lost to Cavan and Roscommon, drew with Armagh but beat Fermanagh and Clare.

What will happen after this?

If Laois win, they will have a chance to gain promotion to Division 1 when they face Fermanagh in their final game next week.

But if they lose, they will be dragged into a relegation dogfight with Clare, Kildare and Fermanagh – two of which will drop.

What other Division 2 games are on this weekend?

Clare host Fermanagh in Ennis with a number of Fermanagh players only ending their period in self-isolation today after 11 of their panel were struck down with the virus. Armagh host Roscommon and Kildare play Cavan.

Who’s the referee?

Patrick Maguire of Longford is the man in the middle for this game. He officiated Laois’s U-20 Leinster final defeat to Dublin back in March.

What are the odds? 

Westmeath are slight favourites for this game at 4/6 while Laois are 7/4. The draw is 13/2.

When, where and how much?

2pm on Saturday, October 17 in TEG Cusack Park, Mullingar. The game is behind closed doors so fans are not permitted.

Where can I follow the game?

We’ll be live-blogging the game on LaoisToday.ie. You can also watch the game on GAA Go while Midlands 103 will have commentary.

Leinster Minor Hurling Championship Round 1 – Offaly v Laois 
In Birr at 2pm

Team News

Laois minor hurling boss Liam Dunne named his starting 15 for the opening round of the Leinster hurling championship last night.

The Laois side contains three of the team that lost in the Leinster quarter final to Wexford last year.

Lawson Obular, David Dooley and Noah Quinlan are still eligible this year. Obular is county champions Abbeyleix’s only representative on the starting 15.

Defeated finalists The Harps have two players on the starting 15 – Cathal Murphy and Cody Comerford – who is the brother of Laois seniors Ciaran and Daniel.

Man of the match from the 2018 Laois minor final, Cillian Dunne, starts at full forward and he is one of three Clough-Ballacolla players on the teams.

While Rosenallis have the highest representation with four – including Dooley brothers David and Diarmuid.

In all, Trumera, Camross, Rosenallis, Borris-Kilcotton, Castletown, Abbeyleix, Clough-Ballacolla, The Harps and Rosenallis have players on the starting 15.

Laois: Finnian Cuddy (Trumera), Jack Phelan (Camross), Aodh Bowes (Rosenallis), Lochlainn Conway (Clough-Ballacolla); Philip Tynan (Borris-Kilcotton), Aaron Phelan (Castletown), Lawson Obular (Abbeyleix); Padraig Brennan (Clough-Ballacolla), Cathal Murphy (The Harps); Diarmuid Dooley (Rosenallis), David Dooley (Rosenallis), Tom Fennelly (Rosenallis); Noah Quinlan (Borris-Kilcotton), Cillian Dunne (Clough-Ballacolla), Cody Comerford (The Harps)

Offaly have not yet named their team.

What’s the recent history between the sides?

Laois and Offaly have met in the minor championship in 2017 and 2018.

In 2017, Laois were comprehensive winners on a scoreline of 2-22 to 0-14.

However, Offaly gained revenge a year later with a 2-19 to 1-14 win.

What will happen next?

This is a straight knock-out competition so if Laois lose, their journey for this year is over.

But if they win, they will take on Kildare or Antrim in the quarter finals of the competition.

Where can I follow the game?

We’ll be live-blogging the game on LaoisToday.ie while Midlands 103 will provide updates.

No fans are allowed but it will, however, be streamed live by Leinster GAA – and can be accessed on this link. 

SEE ALSO – GAA Diary: Zach, Cheddar, Sugrue and minor hurlers on TV

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Stradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016.