Interesting times in Limerick SFC

New Limerick senior football manager Billy Lee, of Newastle West.

HOLDERS, and three-in-a-row seekers, Newcastle West (NCW) against Kildimo/Pallaskenry (KP) is the stand-out fixture in Round Four of the Irish Wire Products Limerick Senior Football Championship, with both teams standing unbeaten after three rounds.

The tie is pencilled-in for Rathkeale’s Seán Finn Park tonight (Thursday) at 6.45pm, with John O’Halloran of Bruree as referee.

Rapid-fire goals in the opening quarter from Peter Nash propelled KP to a snug 2-12 to 0-9 defeat of St Kieran’s. In Askeaton, it was 2-6 to 0-4 at the interval.

Under imminent new Limerick county boss Jimmy Lee, NCW easily accounted for Claughaun (1-12 to 1-5). The eventual winners had pulled clear by five points at the interval, and there was never a hint of an upset in the closing half.

Eoin Hurley landed six points for NCW, while Brian O’Sullivan grabbed 1-2.

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KP had been chalked-up as 20/1 outsiders at the start of the championship, but those handsome odds have been trimmed back of late.

Elsewhere in Group One, Fr Casey’s and St Kieran’s clash in all west derby this Thursday in Newcastle West (6.45pm. Referee: Mike Sexton, Bruree), and Oola tackle Claughaun in Caherconlish on Saturday (6pm. Referee: Michael Browne, Dromcollogher/Broadford).

In Group Two, experienced Jonathan Hayes takes charge of an interesting tie between goal-scoring specialists Ballysteen and Monaleen in Ballybrown tonight (6.45pm) and the St Senan’s official will again be on whistle duty for the clash of Galtee Gaels and Na Piarsaigh in Hospital on Saturday (throw-in 6.45pm).

Table-toppers Adare and relegation-threatened Ballylanders met last night (Wednesday).

Fourth round win are predicted for NCW, Fr Casey’s, Oola, Monaleen, Galtee Gaels, and Adare.

After this weekend, the championship will be idle again for another three weeks.

Rathkeale’s Mick Neville Park – where €1.2million improvement works, including the building of an 800-seater stand, are nearing completion – will likely host the final on the first weekend of November.

Jimmy Lee’s NCW remain outright favourites to once more lift the Fr William Casey Memorial Cup.