Ballinderry Shamrocks v Kilrea Pearses preview


Last year’s finalists Ballinderry Shamrocks take on minnows and this year’s surprise package Kilrea Pearses in the Derry Senior Football Championship decider at Celtic Park, throw in Sunday, 3.45pm.

The Shamrocks have already defeated the Pearses in a close encounter by four points back in August but all of that will be forgotten when the sides take to the field on Sunday.

Ballinderry reached last year’s final where they agonisingly lost out to Coleraine on a score-line of 2-11 to 0-15. The Shamrocks side have reached three out of the last five senior county finals, winning their last title 2008. They also have one club All-Ireland title to their name which they won back in 2002.

The south-Derry side have the added benefit of being awash with talented county footballers. Former All-Star Enda Muldoon leads a star studded side that includes current county players Keith Mcgurkin, Conlieth Gilligan, James Conway, Niall McCusker, Coilin Devlin, Michael McIver, Raymond Wilkinson and Malachy Bell.

Kilrea shocked the 2009 champions Loup in the semi-final defeating them 1-10 to 0-9. The Loup were widely expected to overcome Pearses after they put away champions Coleraine in the quarter-final.

However the men from north-east had other ideas and went about their business in clinical fashion, shaking off the underdog tag to deservedly secure their place in their first ever senior county final.
Ballinderry are hot favourites for this tie and after last year’s narrow defeat will be gunning for glory this time out.

Kilrea’s performances have surprised many people this season, but may be out of their depth come Sunday. The small rural club will have an abundance of support present and there won’t be a cow milked for a year, if lady luck favours them.

Verdict: Ballinderry

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