Laois Shopping Centre Senior Football Championship
Laois SFC Round 2 Losers
Ballyfin v Crettyard
O'Moore Park @4.30pm, Saturday 10th August
Odds: Crettyard 8/15 | Draw 15/2 | Ballyfin 7/4
In a rematch between two teams who met at the same stage in last year's championship, Crettyard will be hoping that they can pull out the same result and keep themselves above relegation against Ballyfin.
Both sides played as Gaels outfits last year, and neither will have that advantage due to the change in rules.
However, it wasn't the Gaels players that proved the difference in the clash last year. Crettyard's Laois Senior star Evan O'Carroll, along with sharpshooter Cormac Murphy up front, inspired Crettyard Gaels to victory on that occasion, with thirteen of their overall fourteen points coming from their boots.
Ballyfin Gaels were without their classy forward Sean Moore that time last year, as he was out of the country during that period.
He did return for the crucial relegation final against Clonaslee St Manman's, and Sean Moore kicked three points in that match. His brother James hit three points as well, while Louis Duff helped himself to 1-3 as relief bore down on Ballyfin faces, with them staying up at Senior by four points.
Ballyfin Gaels were very unlucky last year against Crettyard Gaels, as they missed a host of chances near the end to snatch the result and keep them comfortably above the drop.
Killian Fitzpatrick took the reigns at Ballyfin this year, and after claiming a Division 3 league trophy, he and his troops faced into the challenge of one of the stronger sides in the championship in Graiguecullen in round one.
The underdogs Ballyfin performed heroically on the day, as they went in with a 0-6 to 0-5 lead at half-time. They held onto Graiguecullen for most of the remainder, but in the last ten minutes fatigued bodies took over and resulted in Ballyfin giving away two avoidable goals to lose by a harsh eleven points in the end.
Crettyard played out one of the most entertaining contests in round one with Arles-Killeen. In what was basically a shoot-out between Laois seniors Donie Kingston and Evan O'Carroll, Kingston and Arles-Killeen just about triumphed.
Ballyfin looked the more organised outfit of the two in round one, and if they can keep O'Carroll under wraps somewhat, they can overturn the result from last year.