All Ireland Football Championship Qualifier series success levels

Interesting data on success levels in all of the All Ireland Football Championship qualifier matches accompanying today’s article by Martin Breheny in today’s Irish Independent – (Breheny (23 June 2011), “Win or Bust: Teams risk early exit but qualifiers can be launch pad for assault on Sam”, Irish Independent, p.62)

The article shows that Derry (with 19 wins in 25 qualifier matches) has won the most games in the qualifer series, since they started in 2001,  followed by Donegal (15 wins out of 21) and Meath (14 wins out of 20).

If the figures are analysed to consider teams’ percentage success levels, as opposed to just looking at number of wins, Kerry, Dublin  and Tyrone come very much to the fore and edges these counties into the Top 3 of successful qualifier counties ahead of Derry, Donegal and Meath. These counties’ success levels in their respective provincial championships during the 2000s mean that they have not had as much recourse to playing in the qualifier series as Derry, Donegal or Meath have (in particular Derry as this county has played in every qualifier series since 2001), but when  have played in the qualifiers they have tended to win most of these games, or indeed all of these games as in the case of Kerry. Dublin has only lost one qualifer match – to then All Ireland champions, Armagh, in the 2003 qualifier series (after Dublin had earlier been crushed in the Leinster semi final by Laois – COME ON LAOIS!!!). One of Tyrone’s too defeats in the qualifers came in the 2002 series when they lost to Sligo, a year before Tyrone went on to win the county’s first ever All Ireland championship.    

    W D L P % Success
1 Kerry 8     8 100%
2 Dublin 9   1 10 90%
3 Tyrone 11 1 2 14 81%
4 Derry  19   6 25 76%
5 Donegal 15   6 21 71%
6 Meath 14   6 20 70%
7 Armagh 8   4 12 67%
8 Cork 6   3 9 67%
9 Westmeath 12 1 7 20 62%
10 Kildare 11 1 7 19 60%
11 Sligo 9   7 16 56%
12 Fermanagh 10   8 18 56%
13 Laois 8   7 15 53%
14 Down 9   9 18 50%
15 Mayo 5   5 10 50%
16 Monaghan  9   9 18 50%
17 Roscommon 6 1 7 14 45%
18 Longford 8   10 18 44%
19 Galway 4   5 9 44%
20 Louth 8 1 10 19 44%
21 Wexford 6 2 9 17 39%
22 Wicklow 5   8 13 38%
23 Offaly 5   9 14 36%
24 Limerick 4 1 10 15 29%
25 Cavan 4 1 10 15 29%
26 Clare 3   8 11 27%
27 Tipperary 3   8 11 27%
28 Carlow 3   8 11 27%
29 Antrim 1 1 8 10 13%
30 London     7 7 0%
31 Waterford     8 8 0%
32 Leitrim      9 9 0%
             
  Ulster 86 3 62 151 58%
  Leinster 89 5 82 176 52%
  Munster 24 1 37 62 39%
  Connacht 24 1 33 58 42%
  Connacht/London 24 1 40 65 37%

Ulster counties are shown to have achieved the greatest level of success in the qualifer series, followed closely by counties from Leinster, with counties from Munster and Connacht trailing well behind these provinces.  Munster is shown to be the least successful of the provinces, although if London is included in the analysis then Connacht emerges as least successful.

This data suggests that the qualifier series have offered opportunities to lower ranked counties in Ulster and Leinster, which have tended to be overshadowed at provincial level due to the dominance of Dublin in Leinster and Tyrone/Armagh in Ulster, to impact and develop a run in the Football championship, opportunities that would not have been open to these counties in the old system. Counties have also been able to build on their development during a qualifier series to launch a stronger and more serious challenge for provincial honours in subsequent years. Westmeath’s 2003 Leinster win came in the wake of strong showings by that county in qualifer games in the early 2000s, with the same applying to Sligo’s Connacht championship win in 2007. While never succeeding in winning  the title, Fermanagh’s good performances in the qualifier series in the early 2000s were a precursor to a strong challenge by that county for the Ulster championship in subsequent years.

While the likes of Westmeath, Sligo, Fermanagh, Longford and Monaghan have exceeded expectations in their qualifier performances over the past ten years, other more high profile counties have disappointing records in the qualifiers records. Especially given that they used the qualifers (including three wins over Wicklow, Armagh and Cork) as a springboard to winning the All Ireland in the first year that these were introduced (2001), Galway’s record in qualifier games in the following nine years has been very poor. When the three 2001 qualifier wins are taken out of the equation, Galway’s record in qualifier games played since 2002 would show just one win out of six games played (a 17% success rate), which would only leave London, Waterford, Leitrim and Antrim below them in the qualifier rankings. Counties such as Limerick and Antrim have not been able to build on strong and improving results at the provincial championships in the qualifier series over recent years, while Offaly’s poor record in the qualifier series is at odds with that county’s footballing pedigree and with the fact that Offaly had won a Leinster Football championship only four years before the qualifer system was introduced.

Advertisements

Tags:

3 Responses to “All Ireland Football Championship Qualifier series success levels”

  1. Seamus Says:

    Tyrone’s other defeat (you’ve already mentioned Sligo) was a horrible day in Portlaoise to your native Laois Adrian. Bad enough that we were beat but the car crashed on the way home. A wee trip through the qualifiers mightn’t do Tyrone any harm this year

  2. Gaelic Football qualifiers standings, update « Adrian Kavanagh's Blog Says:

    […] Adrian Kavanagh's Blog Blog posts from Adrian Kavanagh on elections, sports, Eurovision and other entities! « All Ireland Football Championship Qualifier series success levels […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: