A look ahead to the Connacht Final

Connacht GAA Senior Championship Final

Dr. Hyde Park, Roscommon. Sunday 17th June 2018 4pm

RTE 1 and live tracker here on sportsnewsireland.com

Reigning Connacht champions Roscommon meet Galway for the third year in a row in the Connacht football final. Including the drawn final in 2016 its the fourth consecutive meeting between the sides on the marque day in the Connacht football calendar. If you include the fact that the last three FBD league finals have been contested between Galway and Roscommon, then the last seven finals in the province at Senior level have been contested between these two sides.

The fact that Mayo have contested three all-Ireland finals during the same spell would partially explain how the recent domination of Roscommon and Galway at provincial level has went under the radar of many outside of the province.

Galway, similar to last year, will go into Sundays final as favourites. This can be attribute to their higher profile in the national media due to their form in the national league where they topped the table, before going down in the final to the Dubs. Their two championship outings this summer saw them once again defeat Mayo in Castlebar, which was followed up by an impressive dispatching of Sligo in Pearse stadium, registering 4-24 on their way to a 21 point win.

Roscommon have come into this game with far less of a spotlight on them, but they also carry impressive league form into their championship campaign. They defeated Cavan in the division two final and defeated Leitrim by 14points in the Connacht semi-final. 

Last years final in Pearse stadium saw Roscommon upset the prematch predictions, and they got off to a blistering start leading by 1-6 to 0-2 after 15 mins. They went on to win by nine points (Galway 0-12 Roscommon 2-15). This was a complete reversal of the previous years replayed final where Galway triumphed by twelve points. I would expect a tight encounter on Sunday and the conditions on the day may also be a factor as current forecasts predict a wet and windy day in the west. 

Last six meetings

2018 FBD League final   Roscommon 2-16 Galway 3-12 

2017 Connacht final​​   Galway 0-12 Roscommon 2-15

2017 FBD League final​​Roscommon 0-15 Galway2-14

2016 Connacht final replay​​Roscommon 0-14 Galway 3-16

2016 Connacht final​​​Galway 0-13 Roscommon 1-10

2016 FBD final​​​Roscommon 0-13 Galway 2-8

Team News

Roscommon make three changes from last years Connacht Final winning team. 

S McDermott, S Mullooly and C Conolly are the players to make way for Peter Domican, Cathal Compton and Donnie Smith.

1. Colm Lavin (Éire Óg)

2. David Murray (Padraig Pearses)

3. Peter Domican (St Brigids)

4. Niall McInerney (St Brigids)

5. John McManus (Roscommon Gaels)

6. Fintan Cregg (Elphin)

7. Brian Stack (St Brigids)

8. Cathal Compton (Strokestown)

9. Tadgh O Rourke (Tulsk)

10. Ciarain Murtagh (St Faithleachs)

11. Enda Smith (Boyle)

12. Conor Devaney (Kilbride – captain)

13. Donie Smith (Boyle)

14. Diarmuid Murtagh (St Faithleachs)

15. Niall Kilroy (Fuerty)

The is one change to the Galway team from their last outing against Sligo. Paul Conroy comes back in to the side in  midfield and Peter Cooke who proved an able deputy against Sligo makes way.

1. Ruairí Lavelle (Salthill/Knocknacarra)

2. Declan Kyne (Clonbur)

3. Seán Andy Ó Ceallaigh (Naomh Ánna, Leitir Mór)

4. David Wynne (Moycullen)

5. Cathal Sweeney (Killanin)

6. Gareth Bradshaw (Moycullen)

7. Seán Kelly (Moycullen)

8. Paul Conroy (St James)

9. Thomas Flynn (Athenry)

10. Eamonn Brannigan (St Michael’s)

11. Barry McHugh (Mountbellew/Moylough)

12. Johnny Heaney (Killanin)

13. Ian Burke (Corofin)

14. Damien Comer (Annaghdown – captain)

15. Shane Walsh (Kilkerrin/Clonberne)

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