Stern test of Mallow’s credentials
THERE is huge interest locally in the latter stages of the majority of the championship grades this season and nowhere is that more the case than in the Premier Intermediate Football Championship.
In the Premier Intermediate Football division Mallow are in action next Saturday afternoon in Coachford where they will take on a Bandon side that have done really well since gaining promotion from the IFC last season.
Mallow have been the great pretenders in this division for quite a while now but have always seen their challenge come off the rails just when they least expected. 12 months ago it was Kiskeam that burst the Mallow bubble in a game that looked like it had Mallow’s name all over it for long periods.
At least from a Mallow perspective it was the Duhallow men that advanced to senior football which is some consolation – however slight – for the boys from Carrigoon.
There really is little doubt that Mallow have all the credentials, talent, and at this stage desire to win this game but one just can’t overlook what Bandon as a club have managed to do in the last twelve months.
Their senior hurlers were a breath of fresh air this season in the top flight which is a fair achievement considering they only entered the grade around this time last season.
The club’s footballers have also shown they are far from out of their depth at Premier and will fancy making it that both club sides playing senior in 2018 - if they get a sniff of a win here.
Mallow for their part will be eager to push past this test and into the showpiece game where they would either face Newmarket or St Michael’s. Both of those sides could also burst Mallow’s bubble so to say that this division is still wide open in the semi-final stage would hardly be considered sitting on the fence.
If Mallow win they will emulate Fermoy’s achievement of last season when they got sides in both Premier finals however in Mallow they will be desperate to avoid the same fate after Fermoy failed to secure either title by season’s end.
To call this one is tough but Mallow really should have what it takes to win through in a dog fight, but having said that if they don’t perform to the best of their collective abilities it is fair to say they will head back home disappointed yet again.