The quarter-final draw in the Pat Harkin Summer Cup was made last weekend and the four ties should prove to be particularly interesting matches.
The draw and dates of matches resulted - quarter-finals - Tuesday, May 21st, Telstar Colts or Lisahally v. Brandywell Harps; Wednesday, May 22nd, Derry City Academy or Tristar v. Oxford United Stars; Monday, May 27th, Top of the Hill Celtic or Trojans v. Abercorn; Tuesday, May 28th, Ardmore v. Christie’s Bar (Strabane) or Squealing Pig.
This week’s first round games in the Pat Harkin Summer Cup kick-off tonight (Tuesday) when current cup holders, the Derry City Academy face another local youth side, Tristar Boys’ Club in the Brandywell Showgrounds at 7.00 p.m.
Predictably, Derry City will start the game as clear-cut favourites due to their impressive reputation in this particular competion having won the trophy twice over a period of three years.
Joint managers, Eddie Seydak and John Quigg have a large panel to select from and they boast a number of very experienced players in thier squad.
Tristar, on the other hand, have a very good senior team in the Derry & District F.A.’s Premier Division but they will be expected to add a few strengtheners as this will be the club’s first Pat Harkin Cup tie.
And while Derry will be expected to progress, don’t be surprised if Tristar arrive with a trick or two up their sleeves as they will be expeceted to give the young “Candy Stripes” a run for their money with extra time a distinct possibility.
Meanwhile, this Thursday night, May 16th, Pat Harkin Summer Cup specialists, Strabane (Christie’s Bar) will arrive at the Showgrounds with a strong outfit and with this season’s prize-fund boasting £5,000, the Co. Tyrone side will be anxious to remain involved at the business end of the tournament.
Past winners of this competition, Christie’s Bar cannot be taken for granted and with a number of Irish League Premier Division players expected to be in their line-up, they will be considered the competition’s “dark horses.”
But Strabane would be well advised not to take their opponents on Thursday, The Squealing Pig, for granted given that the Muff side have been installed as pre-tournament favourites by local bookmakers, McBride Racing, following the placing of a substantial wager on them to succeed.
Therefore, the Squealing Pig, believed to be made up of former and current Institute players, will prove to be formidable opposition and an very interesting game is in prospect.
There’s no doubt that Thursday’s match is the game of the opening round and the fixture is expected to attract a large attendance to the Lone Moor Road venue.
Admission to Pat Harkin Summer Cup games is £1 and all games will kick-off at 7.00 p.m. sharp.