*St Breckans sharpshooter, Aiden Davidson. Photograph: Burren Eye Photography
Semi-finalists in 2020 and intermediate champions the year previous, St Breckans are not looking past the opening round of this year’s Clare senior football championship.
Management: Donie Garrihy(Manager); Declan O’Keeffe (coach) John McDonagh (trainer) Jersey O’Loughlin, Pat Haugh; John Earls (physio)
Captain: Alan Sweeney
Key Player: Jack Sheedy
One To Watch: Maccon Byrne
Fresh Blood: Oisin O’Loughlin
Players Gone: Stephen Tierney
Titles Won: None
Most Recent Title: None
For St Breckans boss Donie Garrihy, “the championship is everything”. Speaking ahead of the commencement of the new campaign, the Doolin man said, “our only focus at this time is our first round opponents, St. Josephs, Doora/Barefield”.
Having guided St. Breckans back up to senior level with victory in the intermediate championship in 2019, Garrihy came within a whisker of competing in the senior final last season, losing narrowly to Cratloe in a lively semi-final in Cusack Park.
Commenting on their first round opponents this weekend he said, “they are last year’s intermediate champions, they have a huge pick and they have won a huge amount of underage titles in the last few years. It’s the meeting of the intermediate champions of the last two years and we are looking forward to the challenge”.
Asked about predictions which have St. Breckans as one of the favourites to challenge strongly for this year’s senior title he said “I can’t control what others say. We are taking it one game at a time and all we are focussed on at this time is our meeting with St. Josephs this weekend”.
According to the manager of the Lisdoonvarna based outfit, “there are a lot of good experienced teams in the Clare championship. The fact that the Clare senior team has been doing so well in recent times is adding to the excitement ahead of the club championship. Look at the results in the top counties and Clare are up there. The club championship in our county is intense. The place to be is at the top table”.
St. Breckans carried last year’s championship form into this season and despite being without a number of regulars due to their involvement with the Clare senior and under 20 panels, they suffered just one loss in the recently concluded Cusack Cup.
With players of the calibre of Alan Sweeney, Maccon Byrne, Dale Masterson, Jack Sheedy, Joe McGann, Aiden Davidson and the O’Briens to mention some, they will carry the favourites tag into this week’s game with St. Josephs. They won’t get it easy but they should get their campaign off to a winning start.