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Joe McDonagh Cup Round 4 Preview: Laois vs Down

By Laois PRO Fri 17th May

Joe McDonagh Cup Round 4 Preview: Laois vs Down
Joe McDonagh Cup Round 4 Preview: Laois vs Down

Written by Laois PR Team

Laois senior hurlers have 3 wins out of 3 in the Joe McDonagh Cup so far, heading into Round 4 on Saturday May 18th at 3pm in Laois Hire O’Moore Park where they will face Down.

If Laois win against Down, Laois will qualify for the Joe McDonagh Cup Final (the top 2 sides will make the final) as Laois currently stand top of the table on points, and have the head to head advantage over Offaly and Kerry who are in 2nd and 3rd place. In Round 5, Laois will face Westmeath away to conclude the group stages next weekend, May 25/26th

The Joe McDonagh Cup final will take place in Croke Park on June 8th


1. Laois – 6 pts
2. Offaly – 4 pts
3. Kerry – 4 pts
4. Down – 3 pts
5. Westmeath- 1 pt
6. Meath- 0 pts

Tickets can be purchased both online and in person using the following options below:

Tickets can be purchased online here:

Tickets can be purchased in person via selected participating SuperValu stores:

SuperValu Stradbally
Breslin’s SuperValu Rathdowney
McConville’s SuperValu Mountmellick
McLoughlin’s SuperValu Portarlington
Mulhall’s SuperValu Portlaoise SuperValu Abbeyleix SuperValu Parkside Portlaoise

Stream the match live: Clubber TV:

Follow live match scores and updates on our official CLG Laois Twitter account:

Radio: The match will be broadcast live on Midlands Radio 103.

Manager Willie Maher has named the following side to face Meath:

Changes from the Kerry game in Round 3:

Starting changes:

7. Fiachra C.Fennell comes into the starting line up replacing Diarmaid Conway, with Tom Cuddy now starting at no.4.

13. Willie Dunphy comes into the starting line up replacing Picky Maher, with Jer Quinlan now starting no.11

Changes on the bench:

Cody Comerford and Stephen Bergin come into the bench in place of starters Fiachra C Fennell and Willie Dunphy.

The Laois team lines out as follows:



Paddy Purcell is now Laois’ all-time top scorer from play. He is 5th on the overall scoring list. Paddy Purcell passed Paddy Lalor’s 63-year old record for scoring from play in 2023.


Picky Maher has played in 46 SHC matches of which 23 have been won. He has the highest number of SHC games played for any Laois player and with a 50% + win rate.

Laois are 11 white flags away from 3,000 in the senior hurling championships. (Liam McCarthy, Joe McDonagh and some Senior B).

Against Kerry in Round 3 last time out, Laois captain Aaron Dunphy reached double digits in total scoring for his first ever time in the senior hurling championship. Aaron scored 0-11. (8 frees, one 65 and 3 pts from play).


Recap: Kerry vs Laois: Joe McDonagh Round 3 in Tralee on Saturday May 4th.

Final score:

Laois: 1-25

Kerry: 0-18

Laois scorers: Aaron Dunphy 0-11. Picky Maher 0-3. Mossy Keyes 1-1. Paddy Purcell 0-2.
David Dooley 0-2. Aidan Corby 0-2. Liam O Connell 0-2. John Lennon 0-1. Tom Cuddy 0-1.

Team of The Week: Laois defender Liam O’Connell was named on’s Hurling Team Of The Week on Tuesday May 7th as a result of his excellent defensive performance at right half back in the important win over Kerry on Saturday May 4th.


The Laois midfield is proving to be a big strength this SHC campaign. Midfielder’s Paddy Purcell and Aidan Corby continue to be in top form with another brilliant showing versus Kerry. After both players standing out against Meath, they done so again. Both players won alot of ball and both also scored great points from play (0-2 each.) At corner back, Ryan Mullaney has been super in the full back line after his positional switch that occured halfway through Laois’ Div.2A league campaign, going from half back to now corner back since and Mullaney was very solid in blocking the Kerry attack getting through the Laois defense.


Down: still have plenty to fight for on Saturday vs Laois after a previous win over Meath (by 8 pts) defeat to Kerry (by 8 pts) and a thrilling draw result vs Westmeath which leaves Down still competitive for the 2 final spots as they sit 4th on the table with 3 pts, Laois (6 pts) and Offaly (4 pts) currently take 1st and 2nd places so Down are not out of this yet.

Standout players this Joe McDonagh campaign for Down: Matt Conlon has been very good in defense. In front of goal, Tim Prenter and Daithi Sands have scored a combined 4-8 from play between them. Both players scored a total 2-4 each from play in the previous 3 rounds. A great boost for Down was the return of Pearse Og McCrickard (who returned in Round 1 vs Meath recovered after an injury he sustained against Laois last time out in the league semi final) McCrickard ‘s standout game was in the Round 3 draw vs Westmeath where he scored a total 0-13 of which 9 came from frees.

Laois vs Down: Previous meeting

Div.2A league semi final in Laois Hire O’Moore Park on March 23rd 2024

Laois: 1-24
Down: 0-13

Laois scorers: Aaron Dunphy 0-7, Mossy Keyes 0-4, Jer Quinlan 0-4, Paddy Purcell 1-1, Ross King 0-3, Martin Phelan 0-2, Aidan Corby 0-1, Fiachra C Fennell 0-1, David Dooley 0-1.

Down scorers: Pearse Og McCrickard 0-7, Tim Prenter 0-3, Coalan Taggart 0-1, Daithi Sands 0-1 and Barry Trainor 0-1.

By Laois PRO Fri 17th May

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