The morissey cup in Cashel has attracted the cream of coursing all age dogs. In only its second year in the field, Cashel CC can be proud of the quality of all stakes. Indeed it is the work of members in preparing the field and ensuring its safety for these top dogs to run. The opening buckle looks an ideal opportunity for the Duffys to kick off their season with a flag raised. Central advisor was a good puppy last year qualifying for clonmel at the expense of last weeks Desmond cup winner not being able to take his place. After running up in regional, he attempted to qualify at his own esteem but failed in 2 attempts. However in Clonmel he performed with distinction winning the first round in a creditable clock before losing out to Rocks of Bawn. Maughera King indeed will be no pushover after running up in Kilsheelan last year but I feel Central will just have enough to get over the line.
The second buckle is mouth watering with the well touted Skellig sunlight meeting impressive tradaree Derby TS winner from last year, Hi Black Jack. Hi black Jack was well fancied going to Clonmel last year and was the subject of a mini gamble in the process. He won his first two rounds getting the better of his litter brother Bold and Brazen in the 2 nd round. He similar to Central Advisor found Rocks of Bawn too hot to handle. Skellig Sunlight was the talk of a few meetings last year without ever winning a TS. He was beat in the semi final in Knockgraffon before opening a very short price at the Cork meeting at Christmas. However as luck goes, he got run to a standstill and was never seen since. He with Hi Black Jack were due to run in Kilflynn, however both were WD, presumable because of the ground. Both must have been well forward to be entered so early so a cracking course looks set. I marginally give the nod to Skellig.
The 3 rd buckle will see the Derby favourite from last year Kingsmill Rover against the locally trained Man Persie. Kingsmill won his TS last year in great style when in the ownership of Dunphys in Waterford and was supposedly sold for a large 5 figure sum after that win. Another gambled on dog for the Derby he performed with distinction just losing out to eventual winner With Grim Intent in the 3 rd round. He then went on the Irish cup meeting losing a tight 1 st round buckle to Mr Blonde and then falling to Wilton Time in the consolation. He is one my banker dogs for the fantasy coursing this year and I feel he will be the one they all have to beat come Sunday. His opponent Man Persie has no worthwhile form and it would be a great shock should he raise the flag
The 4 th buckle sees Glealea sonny v Coshair Slane. Glealea sonny has been a revelation for connections and has picked up some nice prize money along the way. A winner in Thurles and Knockgraffon last year he qualified for the Champion stakes last year where he fell short to the eventual semi-
Although not as hot as the 1 st half, the 2 nd half throws up some very exciting buckles. The opening buckle sees Kilbreedy Rock v Cracking Jet. Kilbreedy Rock is locally owned in Cashel and ran an n impressive opening round in Kilflynn before being withdrawn. He is meeting the ever consistent cracking jet. A trial stake winner in his opening year, he won a cup in Borrisoleigh last year. I have a sneaky feeling the 3 rd season dog cracking jet might have too many aces in the opening round. He is extremely fast away and I feel this might be enough to hold on. Yipee Kiyay and Needham Work meet in the next buckle. Yippee is a consistent dog who won the cup in Cavan last year. He ran with credit in the Irish cup meeting also. Probably the most interesting dog in the stake is Needham Work. An unraced dog out of Gadget girl he is sure to be ready for this coming from one of the top Kennels in the country. Matthews would hardly hold onto a dog for all ages if they felt he wasn’t worthwhile. On form Yippee looks the one but don’t be surprised if Needham gives him a close call.
The second last course of the day sees Ashwood James v Seaside chaser. A dog with plenty of gears, Ashwood just hasn’t had the rub of the green in his career. Still a maiden, Ashwood ran up cups in ballyduff and was beat just up to the former derby favourite of 2 years ago Kyle Leigh. Seaside chaser has a profile similar to Ashwood James, there or there abouts in many outings without ever getting his head in front. He has been beaten finalist twice and beaten semi finialist 3 times. I think Ashwood might have his measure here.
The final buckle sees Cooga Darlan v Crushers Johnny. Cooga Darlan was a very fast puppy last year beaten in 2 trial stake finals last year. The aforementioned Coshair Slane beat him in Thurles while Valeview flyer (Withdrawn in derby ¼ final) beat him after a tremendous buckle in Galbally. He was beat just up in the puppy stake Tipperary by Kilflynn all age runner up Must name him. His opponent Crushers Johnny showed little until Clonakilty last year. He was beat in the final of a 64 trial stake to the very speedy Breezing Johnny. He is very well bred and I can see him continuing his improvement this year; however I think that he will find Cooga Darlan a bit too lively in the opening round.
Overall I can see the winner coming from the top of the card. My last 4 are Skellig Sunlight, Kingsmill Rover, Yippee Kiyay and Cooga Darlan with my vote going to the Roche trained Kingsmill Rover.