Tooreen’s Cathal Freeman (right) will hope to help his side to another Connacht title on Sunday. Photo: David Farrell

Treble talk in Tooreen ahead of Connacht final


MAYO senior hurling champions Tooreen will be looking to secure a third successive AIB Connacht club intermediate title when they face Galway champions Killimor in Athleague on Sunday (November 27).

Throw-in is at 1.30 p.m. in the Roscommon venue, where Tooreen can expect a big challenge from their Galway opponents but also can go info the contest reflecting on a great victory over Moycullen in last year's final and an even more impressive display against Kinvara in 2019.

There was no championship in 2020 because of the Covid-19 pandemic, so Tooreen are going for three in a row.

Ironically, Tooreen lost the Mayo senior final to Ballyhaunis that year but regained it in 2021 and retained it this year.

That Connacht victory over Moycullen last year came following a superb second-half display.

Level at 0-8 apiece at half-time and facing into the wind for the second half, it was tempting to write off Tooreen's chances that December day in the Connacht GAA Centre of Excellence.

However, Tooreen's sharpness and fitness came to the fore in the closing 20 minutes and from once Sean Regan finished off a great move with a fine finish to the back of the Moycullen net, there only ever looked like being one winner.

In the end, Tooreen ended up winning by four – 1-15 to 0-14.

This year, they enter the decider in fine form, that victory over Ballyhaunis in the county final being quickly followed by a demolition of Roscommon's Four Roads (2-23 to 0-14) and a hard-fought win over London's St. Gabriel's (1-17 to 1-12).

There's no doubting their form, and the fact they have been playing games on a regular basis should stand to them.

Their opponents, Killimor, haven't played for a month, when they annexed the Galway title with a 0-13 to 0-9 victory over neighbours Meelick/Eyrecourt.

It could and probably should have been a more clear-cut win but Killimor were guilty of missing numerous chances. Tooreen will need to be mindful of Killimor's ability to get into good scoring positions.

However, with plenty of experience and the small matter of a three-in-a-row on offer, you can expect Tooreen to be very fired up for this game. Their recent history against Galway opposition suggests they'll be well capable of winning this one. It's won't be easy, but it can be done.

Verdict: Tooreen