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Big guns ready for SFC battle

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Kilmacud Crokes’ Paul Mannion is pictured with the Dublin SFC Clerys Cup last year.

Kilmacud Crokes’ Paul Mannion is pictured with the Dublin SFC Clerys Cup last year.

SPORTSFILE

Kilmacud Crokes’ Paul Mannion is pictured with the Dublin SFC Clerys Cup last year.

After much of the attention around the county has been on the Dublin Senior Hurling Championship, it's time for the big ball to take over as the Dublin SFC begins its 2019 renewal with two matches tomorrow night.

At Monastery Road, Castleknock and Ballinteer St John's will meet at 7.30 in their Group 4 encounter while across the Liffey, St Judes and St Oliver Plunkett's/Eoghan Ruadh do battle in their Group 3 clash at Parnell Park (7.30).

St Jude's have been one of the most consistent teams at the business end of the championship in recent times and team mentor Gerry Carty feels that the championship remains as competitive as ever with a large number of teams capable of dethroning current holders Kilmacud Crokes.

"Of course, it is a hugely difficult championship to win and there are so many decent teams out there that will fancy their chances," he says.

"Recent history tells us that St Vincent's will be in the running but you could name another six or seven teams that have genuine chances of success.

"Ballymun Kickhams have so many good players in their panel and there are more coming through from their U21 'A' championship winning team of last year.

"Of course, Kilmacud will be right in the mix and they played very well in last year's final against us and then you would never overlook Ballyboden St Enda's either.

"Are Na Fianna a springer now, especially with Dessie Farrell in charge and they were flying against us when we played them in the league earlier this year," he said.

Many of the chief contenders will be lining out on a Super Saturday in Parnell Park when holders Crokes face off against Kickhams while St Sylvester's meet Na Fianna in a double-header that highlights the quality and competitive nature of the toughest championship in the country.