Here's your 2013 Fitzgibbon Cup Guide: Part 2

This year’s Fitzgibbon Cup throws in this afternoon. Here’s the second part of our team guide to the competition.

UL's Joe Gallagher and UCC's William Egan in action.
UL's Joe Gallagher and UCC's William Egan in action.
Image: INPHO/Lorraine O'Sullivan

THE 2013 FITZGIBBON Cup throws in this afternoon.

There are 13 teams competing across the four groups this season.

Group A will feature NUI Galway, GMIT, UCC and Mary Immaculate College.

Group B will be a contest between Waterford IT, Cork IT and Carlow IT.

Group C sees UCD, Limerick IT and DCU in opposition. Finally in Group D it is a battle between Dublin IT, UL and St Pat’s-Mater Dei.

There are four games down for decision today:

Group A: NUI Galway v Mary Immaculate College, Dangan, 1.30pm, (Ref: Gus Chapman, Sligo); GMIT v UCC, Carnmore, 3pm, (Ref: Brian Gavin, Offaly).
Group B: Carlow IT v Waterford IT, Carlow IT, 2pm, (Ref: Fergal Horgan, Tipperary).
Group C: UCD  v Limerick IT, Belfield, 2pm, (Ref: Anthony Stapleton, Laois).
Group D: UL v St Patrick’s-Mater Dei, UL Grounds, 2pm, (Ref: Alan Kelly, Galway).

Here’s a closer look at the aspirations of NUI Galway, St Patrick’s, UCC, UCD, UL and Waterford IT ahead of the start of the Fitzgibbon Cup.



Who are their inter-county stars… The Clare trio of Donal Tuohy, Liam Markham and Aaron Cunningham are all involved along with Galway duo Joseph Cooney and Niall Burke, and Limerick’s Kevin Downes.
What’s their history… The Galway-based college have won this competition on ten occasions with their most recent triumph arriving in 2010 after a 30-year absence from the winners podium.
How are the bookies rating them… 10/1
Where are they likely to finish… NUI Galway lost out at the quarter-final stage last year but look stronger this season, particularly in their attacking options.


Who are their inter-county stars… Attacker Niall Arthur struck the match-winning goal for Clare in last summer’s Bord Gáis Energy Munster U21HC final while Nathan Unwin has inter-county experience with Laois.
What’s their history… St Patrick’s College have never won or reached a final in this competition.
How are the bookies rating them… 100/1
Where are they likely to finish… St Pat’s seem to be facing an uphill struggle and will need to get a positive result out of their first game which is a tough test away to UL.


Who are their inter-county stars… Darren McCarthy, Conor Lehane, Killian Murphy, William Egan and Seamus Harnedy are all Cork seniors while Padraig Prendergast, Barry Coughlan, Dara Fives and Brian O’Sullivan are Waterford seniors. Killian Ryan won an All-Ireland U21 medal with Clare last year while James Barry, Dan McCormack and Stephen Maher have Tipperary inter-county experience.
What’s their history… The reigning champions and the market leaders in the Fitzgibbon Cup with 40 titles to their name.
How are the bookies rating them… 4/1
Where are they likely to finish… UCC have ten of last year’s winning team available, and while attackers Stephen Moylan and Shane Bourke are major losses, the team trained by former Tipperary All-Ireland winner Eddie Enright should still mount a stout defence of their crown.

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UCC’s Killian Murphy tackles Walter Walsh of UCD. Pic: INPHO/Lorraine O’Sullivan


Who are their inter-county stars… Tipperary’s Noel McGrath, Limerick’s Conor Allis, Wexford’s Jack Guiney and Garreth Sinnott, Dublin’s Rory O’Carroll and Oisin Gough, and the Kilkenny quartet of Cillian Buckley, Walter Walsh, John Tennyson and Willie Phelan.
What’s their history… UCD have claimed the Fitzgibbon Cup on 30 occasions with their last triumph arriving in 2001.
How are the bookies rating them… 3/1
Where are they likely to finish… It’s 12 years since UCD last won the Fitzgibbon Cup but on paper this year they appear to possess a star-studded side and Tipperary legend Nicky English is an astute manager.


Who are their inter-county stars… UL can call on Kilkenny senior Michael Fennelly, Tipperary seniors Paddy Stapleton and Adrian Ryan, and Galway’s Jonathan Glynn. Limerick duo Mark Carmody and Thomas Ryan are also involved while there is strong Clare representation in Conor Ryan, Darach Honan, Paul Flanagan, Podge Collins, Seadna Morey and Shane Golden.
What’s their history… UL are four-time winners of the Fitzgibbon Cup with their most recent success arriving in 2011 against Limerick IT.
How are the bookies rating them… 9/4
Where are they likely to finish… The competition favourites, UL should feature in the business end of the competition with plenty talent on the pitch and the likes of Brian Lohan and Ger Cunningham amongst their management team.


Who are their inter-county stars… Waterford seniors Stephen O’Keeffe, Liam Lawlor, Noel Connors and Pauric Mahony, Kilkenny’s Eoin Murphy, Tipperary’s Liam McGrath and  Thomas Hamill, and Galway’s Bernard Burke are all involved.
What’s their history… Waterford IT have lifted the trophy on eight occasions and last savoured glory in 2008 when they defeated Limerick IT.
How are the bookies rating them… 16/1
Where are they likely to finish… At first glance WIT’s squad does not appear to be as powerful as past vintages yet the Carriganore-based side still have enough strength to suggest they can reach the last eight, a feat that eluded them last year.

About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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