Breaffy back in the final

Photo: @MayoGAA

On an evening when the stakes were high at MacHale Park, it was Breaffy’s greater experience that won out. They started well, had established a firm hold on the contest at half-time and then, when Westport came back at them after the break, did enough to get over the line.

The Senior club Championship this year has featured some cracking contests. On a dull and damp evening in Castlebar, however, this wasn’t one of them. The first half was dour and fairly error-ridden, with Westport the biggest culprits in the latter department. Time and again they created good scoring chances only to miss them, with handling errors and misplaced passes repeatedly seeing them lose possession as well.

Breaffy went in at the break three points to the good but they were far from home at that stage. They extended that lead to four points on the resumption but Westport soon cut the gap back to just a single point as they finally began to convert the chances they were creating with a greater degree of efficiency.

At least that’s what sounded like was happening, as the Mayo GAA TV service failed to reappear for the second half. This meant that those of us who had been watching the live stream had to switch to the audio commentary on Midwest, which was fine but it was still a shame that the video packed in when it did. It was definitely a night to forget for the service.

UPDATE: the entire game is now available to watch on YouTube – here.

Westport’s inability to push on from there, combined with Breaffy’s better game management down the closing stretch, seems to have been the difference between the two teams. Westport, aiming for a first Senior final appearance since 1991, found themselves chasing the game against a team that have been around the block a few times and refused to panic as the closing line approached. Breaffy held their nerve and saw out a two-point win, on a scoreline of 0-15 to 0-13.

The evening’s opening match turned out to be a far more entertaining contest. Hollymount/Carramore came into this evening’s IFC semi-final against Kiltimagh as very strong favourites, having laid waste to every team they’d met so far this summer. They left MacHale Park, though, well beaten by a lively, determined Kiltimagh team who took the game to their opponents from the start and upped the ante to effect when they needed to in the last quarter.

Photo: @MayoGAA

Kiltimagh served notice of their intent early on, posting the game’s first two points. When Darren Coen dispatched a penalty to the net on ten minutes to put his team in front, however, that looked to be a momentum changer.

But it wasn’t. Holly/Carra kept their noses in front, just about, until the half-hour but they failed to take that advantage into the break. Instead, the East Mayo lads hit two points on the spin to lead by one at the short whistle.

The contest really hit top gear in an increasingly compelling second half. Kiltimagh stretched their lead to four but just after the water break that gap was back to two.

It always felt as if Hollymount/Carramore’s greater strength and recent Senior experience would prove decisive and, guarding that two-point lead, Kiltimagh’s position was now looking perilous. All the more so when, soon after, it was reduced to just one with ten minutes of normal time to go.

But that’s when Kiltimagh got motoring again, three points on the spin giving them a precious buffer as the seconds ticked down towards the end. They didn’t panic either when the favourites got back within two points of them again but instead went hunting for more scores themselves.

They got them too, pointing three more times without reply in injury time. The grace note was supplied by full-back Donovan Cosgrave who galloped forward and punched over to complete a five-point win for his team. Kiltimagh won in the end by 0-20 to 1-12.

Elsewhere today, Swinford won the IFC relegation final in dramatic fashion. Trailing Islandeady by five points at Parke with the game entering injury time, Swinford bagged two goals to win by a point, 2-8 to 0-13.

In the first of the JFC semi-finals, meanwhile, Kilmaine beat Cill Chomain by 3-10 to 0-11.

21 thoughts on “Breaffy back in the final

  1. Very disappointed with Mayotv and losing the second half coverage. Like you WJ I followed second half on Midwest. Westport missed too many opportunities in the first half and this allowed Breaffy to keep their noses in front. Looking forward to the second semi final this evening and hopefully Mayotv will have sorted out whatever happened yesterday. Knockmore by 3!

  2. It’s on the weekend after next, John, with the Intermediate and Senior finals on the same bill as per normal. The Mayo GAA website has both finals listed for Saturday week, 19th September.

  3. Anyone read the excerpt from Bernard Brogans book in today’s Sunday independent. Fascinating stuff – first time I’ve seen a proper insight into how they operate published in the media. Describes how Gavin left him out of the 26 before the 2019 semi final v Mayo. What comes across strongly is how driven the squad are for every edge they can uncover. Brogan describes how he f**ked Gavin out of it on the phone he when he found out he wasn’t in the 26.
    I reckon the book will be an interesting read for Mayo fans too given the intense rivalry over the last decade with dublin.

  4. Donovan is a great defender all right but a bit unfair to apportion all the credit to him in a fine win. Darren also had a great game and showed his class in that game. Surprisingly no mention of Seanie Walsh mmmm

  5. Great comeback win for Balla in the Intermediate semi. Knockmore started like an express train in the Senior semi and are full value for the 6-point lead they’re taking into the break. Ballina have a mountain to climb now.

  6. thanks to the streaming coverage even by clubs i got see a lot of football this past month, I found that there is a lot of young and season talent putting their hands up and outshining some of the more recognizable intercounty names, Goalkeeper, backs, midfield and scoring forwards we are supposed to be in short supply on, out of the 4 midfielders on display yesterday Stephen Coen was the weakest. Nathan Moran looks to have filled out and looked very mobile, Seanie Walsh together with Paul Kelly are a strong duo and both have been in great form. Barry Duffy I felt came out on top of another highly rated midfielder in Evan o Brien. Shane McHale is looking like a rock today and is giving Kevin Mcloughlin the base to tear Ballina apart. Have to say the Dempseys are impressing me young Connel and his father Ray has this team well trained playing to a system that is working. Was looking forward to last nights battle between Eoghan McLaughlin and Conor o shea shame about the service. Think we have found a few replacements.
    For goalkeeping Colm Reape has some kickout, and Matthew Flanagan also shining with Balla. Knockmore defending like wildcats David McHale looks like a younger Chris Barrett, together with Keiran King wouldn’t look out of place at a higher level. Again this weekend Naughton, Orme and Eoghan Lavin showing they are talented inside forwards. think with Gerry Canavan Fionan Duffy , the Moran brothers Mark and Colm and Paul Towey they have shone this summer. Gareth o Donnell should also get a mentioned thought he played well against Breaffy and Westport think he has been unfortunate not to have got a run at Mayo level.

  7. Ballina so poor today. McLoughlin great game, he does so well in that loose/sweeper like role and credit to Knockmore.

    Gotta say though, the quality of the two semi finals wasnt great.

  8. Congratulations to Knockmore, hell of a performance and some brilliant individual displays, Well desired and should be a cracking final. Great service on the streaming front long may it continue

  9. Mayomessi….Stephen Coen should be nowhere near midfield IMO. He is an out and out defender. If he had a bit more pace he would be ideal at no.3 and could be a real option for Mayo at the back over the coming years.

    I have watched him loads since he was a minor and I cannot understand why on earth any manager would put him in centre field.

    On the topic of players being put in the wrong position. Kevin McL….please James Joran, dont ever put him corner forward again!!! He is a superb middle third player..linking defence and attack and can get the end of an attack and score.

  10. Knockmore’s teamwork outshines Mayo teamwork. I’ve not seen that same rapid fire quick synchronised attacks at county level with Mayo. Pass pass shoot. Pass pass pass shoot. It’s the pace of the runs and awareness of each other’s runs. Excellent coaching, well done Knockmore.

  11. Hard luck to my own Stephenites today Bit disappointed we didn’t make the final but Knockmore we’re simply the better side on the day they are a fine young team I wish them all the best in the final. We had 4 excellent teams in the semi final it bodes well for the future of Mayo football.

  12. Agree that Stephen is a great defender and not a midfielder. Would always have him on the team for his skill work rate and leadership. The last attribute being his most important.

    Well done Kiltimagh I did not have you in my accumulator this time but I have to admit I was nervous going for Hollymount Carramore. Seanie Walsh in full flight, is always worth the admission money

  13. Knockmore are such a well drilled team. I wonder would Ray Dempsey be interested in a county minor or U20 job the next time one becomes available?

  14. I don’t know about being a gentleman Jr maybe I’m going soft in my old age. But I genuinely wish Knockmore the best in the final I am not too despondent we have some fine young players coming through and hopefully we will learn from today’s defeat. One thing I don’t want to see Ballina repeat is our players making brash statements off the field saying that we will beat this team or that team that sort of stuff only adds grist to the mill of the opposition we need to learn to be like the Yerras of this world and be more cuter and more respectful

  15. I hear what your saying backdoorsam in relation to the brash statements but he’s not the reason why Ballina lost today. He definitely quieted naughton when he went back on him. The Knockmore intensity seem to catch Ballina off guard today. This club championship shows us there’s quality footballers in the county that who never get the exposure they deserve. I think Horan will be one of the happiest men in Mayo with all this talent coming through

  16. Absolutely not Mayo 36 and I’m not picking on him and didn’t mean to single him out he’s a brillant footballer and a great guy in general and a sound lad. I’m just saying that a team has to be as cute as possible and not give the opposition anything they can use against you to motivate themselves. Knockmore were 100% the better team today and deserved to win and our lads can hold their head up high they have come on in leaps and bounds this year and will only get better

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