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05 Oct 2022

Preview- Intermediate grade looks as competitive as ever

All to play for: The Race for the Hanrahan Cup kicks off this weekend

Preview- Intermediate grade looks as competitive as ever

The launch of the Michael Lyng Motors Hyundai Intermediate Championship took place last week. Picture: Willie Dempsey

The upcoming intermediate hurling championship looks another tough one to call on paper.

Glenmore were hugely impressive winners of the 2021 crown as they defeated the likes of Danesfort, Thomastown and St Lachtain’s on the way to landing the title.

As has been the case with Lisdowney and Tullaroan in recent years, Glenmore have stayed up in their first year at the top level and 12 clubs will be aiming to replicate them in this years campaign.

The action gets underway on Saturday with three games down for decision.

Young Irelands and Mooncoin kick things off in what looks a real 50-50 game on paper.

Gowran were the only team to defeat championship favourites Thomastown in the league and with Mikey Carey delaying his travels until the conclusion of the championship they will fancy their chances.

Mooncoin have secured their status after coming up to Intermediate level as All-Ireland Junior Champions but they will be looking to make an even bigger impact.

A close affair is expected but Gowran’s experience may tell in getting them over the line.

O’Loughlin Gaels and Dunnamaggin meet on Sunday in the other Round 1 affair and it’s another game that could go either way.
Dunnamaggin have plenty of underage promise with the likes of Denis Walsh, Joe Fitzpatrick and Andy Hickey standing out but it may be the future when we see the best of them and O’Loughlin’s second string may have too much.

Both relegation/Round 1 games take place on Saturday with 2021 finalists Freshford meeting St Martins and Fenians of Johnstown facing Conahy Shamrocks.

The loss of James Maher may be crucial in the first game and despite losing all of their previous five league games, St Martins may cause an upset.

Fenians of Johnstown are well used to relegation battles and that battle hardened spirit can help them see off Conahy Shamrocks.

The league and shield finals are down for decision on Sunday with Thomastown and Danesfort meeting in a very appetising league final in Callan while Rower Inistioge who have Darragh Joyce back from Australia and Carrickshock clash in the shield final which takes place in Bennettsbridge.

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