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Leinster News

(Michael Forde Leinster PRO)

Now that the “dust” has settled after round seven of the Bord Gáis Energy NFL, five Leinster teams remain in contention for a place in the Bord Gáis Energy NFL finals. Laois, are still standing in division one after they knocked Dublin out of the competition in the final round game (2-10 to 2-8), the O’Moore side will face table toppers Galway on Sunday next (25.4.2010) in St Brigids-Kiltoom, where referee Gavin Corrigan of Down will throw in at 15:30.
This division one game has all the ingredients to produce an excellent semi-final match, when both sides met in round six on the 13th of March last, the tribes woman traveled back to the West with the narrowest of winning margins (1-12 to 1-11), but most important they had the three points safely packed away.
Its seven years (2003) since Laois last celebrated winning a NFL division one title, on that occasion they beat Kerry by a single point (2-10 to 2-9), and according to the stats Galway come in this semi final, in the driving seat having scored 12 goals and 74 points, while conceding 10 goals and 69 points, whereas Laois have scored 8 goals and 77 points and conceded 11 goals and 76 points. On Sunday next both sides start with a clean sheet, with the winners meeting either Cork or Monaghan in the final.
Kildare and Meath are in action in the Bord Gáis Energy NFL division two semi finals, Kildare take on Armagh on Saturday (24th April ’10) evening at 5pm, and the man in the middle is John Niland of Sligo.
Back in February of this year in round three of the league, Kildare played host to Armagh and were unlucky to lose out to the Orchard County by the narrowest of margins (1-5 to 0-9).
Out of the seven games played to date in the NFL, Kildare have won four, whereas Armagh’s only defeat was to Meath in round four. The Lilies will be hoping to turn the tables on the Orchard County this week end to book their place in their first, division one final, which ever team is victorious on Saturday next, their opposition will come from either Meath or Donegal in the division two final.
When Meath and Donegal step on to the pitch in Templeport County Cavan on Sunday (25th April ’10) next, they will be well aware who they could be facing in the final, however that will be the last thing on their minds when referee Gerry Guinan of Galway throws the ball in at 15:30. Donegal have already registered a win over Meath when the sides clashed in Pairc Tailteann, Navan on Easter Sunday , the visitors had six points to spare (1-11 to 3-11) at the final whistle.
But Meath will be focused on not repeating the same mistakes. Fielding without Elaine Duffy and Kellie Allen against Donegal proved costly, and manager Brendan Dardis will be optimistic that there will be a different outcome for next Sunday’s match with both players playing key roles in the Royals’ success over Down which allowed for qualification into the semi finals. What is guaranteed for Sunday is a thrilling contest as both have sets of players their sights firmly fixed on reaching the Bord Gáis Energy NFL Division 2 Final where they will face either Armagh or Kildare in the final.
Wexford head North as far as O’Toole Park in Dublin to take on Cavan at 4pm, in their division three semi-final, the model County go in to this game as under dogs, although they did take a big scalp in round seven, when they beat Fermanagh (2-12 to 1-9).They will have it all to do on Sunday next, but Jim McGovern and Co. have slowly groomed this Wexford side in to a slick fast moving unit.
Cavan are unbeaten in this years Bord Gáis Energy NFL, although Waterford gave them a run for their money, the Deise losing out by just three points (0-12 to 1-6) in their round seven match. Cavan sit on top of division three having amassed a total of 12 goals and 95 points to date, conceding 6 goals and 28 points, confirming that they have the best defensive record in division three. Wexford’s stats, state that they have bagged 11 goals and 69 points, while their scores against, account is 7-61 in the red, which put their formidable back line in a very respectable third place, behind Cavan and Longford.
Before this game throws in, the winners of the other division three semi final should be know, as Fermanagh and Waterford go head to head in St. Brigids, Kiltoom at 2pm.
In Division four, Leinster’s only survivor, Louth, travel to Ballyconnells-Cavan, to take on division four league leaders Leitrim. This is a tall order for the Wee County, they suffered a heavy defeat to Leitrim back in March, when the sides met in round six. Yvonne Duffy from Cavan will take charge of this game.
Best of luck to all competing this week end.

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