Pomeroy hope to mark their centenary in style in Tyrone intermediate final
DERRYLAUGHAN simply want to regain their place in senior football but, for Pomeroy, there’s much more to Sunday’s Donnelly Vauxhall Tyrone Intermediate Championship final.
The Plunkett's are celebrating their centenary this year, and to mark the occasion with a major title would be something special. Both sides have been particularly impressive on their way to the decider, playing some open, attacking football and executing spectacular scores.
Mark Harte’s side have seen off Aghyaran, Gortin and Eskra, while Derrylaughan got the better of ast the challenges of Moy, Cookstown and Agaloo. Justin McCaffrey and Chris Colhoun scored the Pomeroy goals that shot down Aghyaran in the first round, while it was John Loughran who hit the net to help them squeeze past Eskra by 1-9 to 1-7 in the semi-final.
Derrylaughan’s Ciaran Quinn and Paul Donnelly were goal-scorers against both Moy and Cookstown, and it was Ciaran Gervin who grabbed the vital three-pointer in the semi-final against Aghaloo.
Pomeroy have three Tyrone panellists in their side - the McGeary brothers, Ciaran and Hugh Pat, along with Frank Burns - but Derrylaughan, managed by Aidan Taggart, feel they have struck a balance that could see them go all the way.
Pomeroy captain Hugh Pat McGeary believes the club is ready to bring an end to many years of championship disappointment: “We’re working well as a team, we have a good band of young players and this is the first time in a long time that the club has got to a county final.
“We haven’t had a good record in the championship, it’s been pretty poor, but this was one of our targets, to set a good standard this year in the championship,” he said.
"We have gone on a good run this last while, and we hope to keep that going.”
He stressed the importance of playing for the full 60 minutes, particularly in the latter part of the game: “We have been ridiculed for not being a second-half team for a long time and, this last couple of games, we have had to really bite the bullet, because the second half against Aghyaran especially was the one that nearly got us knocked out.
“We have had to change our game plan to work on the second half, and the first half too. They’re two halves of football and anything can happen.”
Meanwhile, Derrylaughan captain Fergal McAliskey is in no doubt that Sunday’s decider will be the toughest game to date: “Pomeroy have been favourites right from the very start of the competition, and I suppose rightly so,” he said.
“If you look at the county men they have, and a bit of pedigree in their management. It’s going to be a tough, tough test. From the start of the year, everybody had Pomeroy’s name written on the cup. But we’ll give it a rattle, give it our best go and just see what happens.”
McAliskey was relieved to get through a tough semi-final with three points to spare over Aghaloo: “Aghaloo made it hard for us, they tackled hard, ran at us, and we probably haven’t really faced a team as physical strong as that, as quick as that this year, so it’s a really good test for us.
"Pomeroy is going to be a step up again.”