Ballinacourty take on the Nire without star quartet

THE Waterford SFC title race will be decided, a week later than expected, at Fraher Field Dungarvan tomorrow (2pm).

Last Sunday Patrick Hurney’s late point rescued champions Ballinacourty in their thriller with the Nire.

However the titleholders must plan for the replay without wing-back Richie Foley and free taker James O’Mahoney who were injured in the drawn tie along with long-term casualties Shane Briggs and John Kindregan.

“It’s a big ask of us,” ‘Courty chairman Tony Mansfield admitted.

“To be without even one of these four fine and vastly experienced players would be a blow, but to be without all four leaves us with a huge task if we are to remain at the top of the pile.”

The Nire camp is injury-free but manager Sean Guiry wouldn’t take anything for granted. He said: “We feel we should have won it the last day but credit to the champions who refused to panic when their title was tottering. It will take an even bigger effort on our part this time to dethrone them.”

Guiry will be keen to negate the threat of ‘Courty full-forward Gary Hurney and if he can be kept in check, the Nire will take a huge step in their bid to win their sixth title.

Champions die hard however and ‘Courty will not surrender their title without a fight, but that quartet of injuries could prove their undoing.

Meanwhile, in the curtain-raiser, De La Salle aim to add the U21 hurling title to their senior crown when they face Cappoquin (12.30pm). De La Salle are favourites and include a number of their county and provincial championship-winning senior side, including county star Kevin Moran.

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