Johnny Dunning, right, will be hoping to help Clann na nGael to the county semi-finals this weekend.
THREE South Roscommon outfits will this weekend bid for places in the semi-finals of this year's Shannonside FM Roscommon Senior Football Championship.
Defending champions St Brigid's are again red-hot favourites to retain the Fahy Cup, and their campaign continues against Western Gaels at Dr Hyde Park on Sunday (1.30pm), as part of a Hyde Park double header that also includes the clash of near-neighbours Clann na nGael and Elphin (3pm).
Elsewhere, Padraig Pearses (winners of last year's intermediate championship) meet Castlerea St Kevin's in their quarter-final at Kiltoom on Saturday evening (5.30pm).
Roscommon Gaels and St Faithleach's make up the quarter-finals line-up when they meet at Strokestown on Sunday (5.30pm).
Padraig Pearses v Castlerea
Pearses manager John Donoghue can welcome back forward Sean Fahy to the fold following a shoulder injury, and he feels his largely inexperienced team can progress further in the championship, despite this year having to cope without six of last year's IFC winning panel.
"We were satisfied by our form in the group stages, but Castlerea are an experienced team and have five county players. It will probably be a real dogfight but we certainly can win. We have lots of young players but there's also a lot of talent in the team," said Donoghue, who believes he'll have no fresh injury concerns this weekend.
St Brigid's v Western Gaels
St Brigid's have several injury worries, but most observers will expect their great strength-in-depth (which was fully utilised when they recently won the League title) to help them past Western Gaels.
However, selector Benny O'Brien is taking nothing for granted.
"Western Gaels beat us in the 2008 championship and have four inter-county players, so we expect a very tough game. They have a well-balanced team, with the likes of Cathal Cregg, Kevin Higgins and Seanie McDermott capable of hurting anyone on their day. We feel Western Gaels are one of our closest challengers, and that we'll struggle if we drop our standards at all," said O'Brien.
Johnny Murray is ruled out at this stage in the week, while doubts persist over Peter Domican, Robbie Kelly and Conor McHugh.
Clann na nGael v Elphin
Clann na nGael, meanwhile, also showed good form in the group stages and will be looking to continue a good campaign against Elphin.
They actually beat this weekend's opponents in the group phase, but manager Eamonn Harney is refusing to read into that result, and also points out that Elphin defeated Clann by six points earleir in the year in a league match.
Clann are also facing the losing finalists from the past two years.
"It's going to be a big challenge for us," he said.
"It's been a difficult last few years for our club. I think we've been involved in some sort of relegation battle for four out of the last six years, so it's nice to be in this side of the competition and competing for a place in the last four. I think Elphin are still regarded as the second best team in the county, and while our confidence is good and we can look forward to the game, there's probably going to be very little between the sides," added Harney, who has no injury concerns ahead of a crucial weekend of action in Roscommon.