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Sports : Sports-John Mulligan Last Updated: 2, Apr 2018 - 10:02

The Weekend Ahead
By John Mulligan
9, Apr 2003 - 23:47

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It's an unusual fact that local rivalry always brings out the best (and worst) in people, especially when their local team is involved. Take for example any game that features Castlebar and Westport. You don't need a historian to find out about these games because there will always be someone somewhere who was at the said game. And it doesn't matter a jot what sport either. A team that has not had the greatest of years suddenly start to play like world champions when they realise that they will be facing their nearest and dearest on the sporting field. Games between Castlebar and Westport are always passionate affairs, played at 100 miles an hour with no regard for the supporters’ nervous dispositions. And this weekend, my friends, will be no different. In fact it has become the most talked about sporting event of the year so far.

For the benefit of our Website visitors who have no idea what I am talking about, I am talking about the forthcoming Connacht junior cup quarter final in soccer between Castlebar Celtic and Westport United which will kick off at 2.30pm next Sunday. For one side from Mayo to make the semi-final is an achievement, for two is a blessing and for those two to be neighbours who have played each other since they learnt how to kick a ball is nothing less than a gift from the heavens.

This game has grabbed the attention of the whole Province. The wonderful FAI junior cup run from Westport has had the town on its feet. Castlebar's determination to make up for last year's final defeat to Mervue has added a special spice to the occasion. And all will be decided on Sunday.

But if you think that, for one minute that this is the only sporting event of any note this weekend, I'm afraid that you would be seriously mistaken. The First round of the Mayo cup takes place as 64 teams begin a journey that will finish in September. In rugby, Castlebar take on Corinthians in the quarter final of the Connacht Junior Cup. Corinthians are the side that beat Castlebar in the semi-final of the league last season so revenge is in the air. Ballinrobe are at the same stage of the competition and they take on Connemara. In Gaelic Games Mayo feature in the final of the FBD league while their hurlers take on Louth. Handball finals also take place and there’s a full fixture list. This is going to be one of the biggest sporting weekends of the year and you can stay in touch of the action by listening online, or by checking out local press on all the news. Get ready, this is going to be special!!!

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