Saturday 4 February 2023 Dublin: 9°C
# Fixture Mess
'He's effectively missing out on an All-Ireland final. How often do you get that chance?'
NUIG star Damien Comer is frustrated that the Sigerson Cup final has clashed with Corofin’s All-Ireland semi-final on Saturday.

Electric Ireland GAA HE Championships First Class Rivals Sigerson Cup Final Preview Sam Barnes / SPORTSFILE Damien Comer was speaking at the Electric Ireland GAA HE Championships First Class Rivals Sigerson Cup Final Preview Sam Barnes / SPORTSFILE / SPORTSFILE

TOMORROW’S SIGERSON CUP final will see both UCD and NUIG missing key players as the game clashes with Corofin’s All-Ireland semi-final against Moorefield.

Defenders Kieran Molloy and Liam Silke will line out for the Galway champions in Tullamore at 2pm, while their respective colleges meet with Sigerson honours on the line at 3.30pm in north Dublin venue Santry Avenue.

Full-forward Damien Comer says Molloy will be a big loss for NUIG, but it’s the player he has sympathy for.

“It’s disappointing for us as a team as well as him, but more so for him,” he says. “He’s effectively missing out on the chance to play in an All-Ireland final. How often do you get that chance to play?

“It’s not ideal, really. You have 365 days of the year – for two massive competitions to collide on the one day, it just doesn’t make sense.

“It’s for Kieran and Liam Silke respectively, you’d feel sorry for them because club obviously comes first and you can’t blame them for that but they’re missing out on that chance.

Padraig Lucey with Kieran Molloy Oisin Keniry / INPHO Oisin Keniry / INPHO / INPHO

“I know if I was in that situation I’d be very annoyed having to miss it. Of course you’re playing in an All-Ireland semi-final with your club which is great but you’re still missing out on an All-Ireland final.

“I’d be very annoyed if I didn’t get the chance because of my commitments to another part of the GAA. I think it’s very unfair on the lads.”

Both players saw action in the Sigerson semi-finals on Wednesday night. Molloy scored a point as a 42nd minute substitute during NUIG’s win over DIT in Mullingar, while Silke notched a score for UCD after arriving off the bench in the 50th minute in a game that required two periods of extra-time.

“Kieran would have probably played the full game if he was allowed,” Comer says. “He loves it. He’s fitted in well with the lads.

“He wasn’t around early on in the year because of club commitments, but anytime he’s in there for us he’s given his all. He’s going to be a massive loss to us and we’ll have to wish him the best of luck with his club. It’s just disappointing the way it’s worked out.”

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Liam Silke and Donie Newcombe James Crombie / INPHO UCD's Liam Silke won't be part of their Sigerson Cup final squad tomorrow James Crombie / INPHO / INPHO

10 Galway men saw action for NUIG during their 2-12 to 0-15 win over DIT in the last four and Tribe captain Comer believes that bodes well for Kevin Walsh’s squad.

“It’s the first year there’s actually been a very strong backbone of the NUIG team involved with Galway. I think there’s seven or eight panellists on the Galway squad, there’s an awful lot more from different counties and there’s a bigger spread.

“I suppose it helps as you’re playing with the lads a bit more and you know how they play and where they’re looking to kick pass and stuff. You respond by playing with them. From the opening three games the lads have started in all three of them and had very good games.

“That’s definitely stood and confidence wise it builds them up to be very good players with NUIG so hopefully they can continue their form on into Saturday.”

Damien Comer was speaking at the Electric Ireland GAA HE Championships First Class Rivals Sigerson Cup Final Preview

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