Ulster Update

Millar McCall Wylie Junior Cup

After Saturday’s second round action, the last eight of the Junior Cup in Ulster makes for a competitive list.

You have your leading contenders such as the holders Ballynahinch 2nds and Qualifying League leaders Instonians.

You have your challengers with real potential such as Bangor, Ballyclare and Ballymena 2nds.

And finally you have your dark horses, your outsiders namely, Omagh, Enniskillen and Belfast Harlequins 2nds.

Munster Update

Junior Clubs Challenge Cup

Sunday’s Challenge Cup action went largely to form with the big result of the day coming from Newcaslte West as they steam rolled Muskerry with surprising ease.

While the Limerick finished well ahead of their Cork opponents last season, both sides were unbeaten coming into this one and a close battle was predicted but for whatever reason, this was a fiercely one sided affair.

Elsewhere Kilfeacle’s good form continued with a win over St MAry’s, St Sean’s had too much for Kinsale and Skibbereen won a tight first round battle with Waterpark.

Results
Kilfeacle & District 23, St Mary’s 11
Muskerry 7, Newcastle West 49
Skibbereen 13, Waterpark 10
St Senan’s 30, Kinsale 7

Leinster Update

Gorey Wicklow

Leinster Division 1a

It’s four from four for Gorey now after a hard fought win in Longford on Sunday afternoon. They hold a two point lead in the table from Kilkenny who have won three, lost one and picked up four bonus points after they won comfortably against Newbridge.

Tullow are the dark horses for now, they are not collecting bonus points yet but three wins from four is a sharp start all the same.

That has them four back from Kilkenny for now and level with a Malahide side that have won two and lost two but racked up a high score against Carlow on Saturday night.

Connacht Update

Ballina Corinthians

Connacht Update

A busy Sunday in Connacht included a clash of the top two at the Castle Grounds where Connemara usurped Monivea 17-13 and a first win in four for Ballina against reigning champions Corinthians.

In Carrowholly, Westport made it four wins in a row by defeat a Galwegians side now in the bottom two while Ballinasloe scored four tries in defeat OLBC 30-5 at Moher Road.

Caption: Action from Ballina’s bonus point 35-28 win over Corinthians. Pic: Corinne Beattie.

Division 1a
Monivea 13, Connemara 17
Ballinasloe 30, OLBC 5
Westport 24, Galwegians 17
Ballina 35, Corinthians 28

Leinster Previews

Wicklow

Leinster Division 1b  (Sunday 2:30 unless stated)

Tullow v Wicklow

The men at Blackgates are in the hard to fathom category at the moment, the heavy loss in Gorey had us writing them off in round one but then they went to Malahide and edged a 51 point shoot out by a single point with William O’Brien and Aho Bloomfield snatching the tries. Two wins from three but 14 tries conceded all the same.

The visitors are a threat with two wins from three also but a little more stability in the tires against category having only conceded six. The 18-11 loss in Gorey was no disaster and that losing bonus point yet prove to be mighty valuable. They’ll expect at least that here but they’ll target an upset.

Away by 3 

Munster Previews

St Senans

The Divisional Cups take centre stage in Munster this weekend as the leagues take a back seat for a couple of weeks.

These competitions got lost in the calendar last year after an inexplicable decision to move them to the end of the season where the final actually clashed with the Junior Cup final. St Mary’s win over Cobh didn’t get the exposure it deserved as a result of that. Anyhow, here are the fixtures.

Junior Clubs Challenge Cup

Kilfeacle and District v St Marys , at Kilfeacle , 2:30 PM

The champions might be about to fall at the first hurdle because the hosts are in good shape with the only set back so far being their loss in Clonmel.

Home by 3

St Senans v Kinsale , at Jimmy Slattery Park, 2:30 PM

A straightforward call as the hosts will contend for the title and the visitors Kinsale are just not sharp enough at the moment to compete at Division 1 level and have been found wanting for the speed of their play.

Home by 11

Connacht Previews

Connemara OLBC

Connacht Junior League Division 1a (Sunday 2:30):

Monivea v Connemara (Kick off 3pm)

The game of the season so far in Connacht as the top two clash at the Castle Grounds. It has been quite a while since we’ve had two Junior clubs at the forefront in the Connacht Junior League title stakes, you’d have to go back to the 2011 league title race between Sligo and Monivea for that and no one will forget the incredible encounter those sides served up in Hamilton Park that season.

There is a feeling coming into this one that Connemara might have the edge, are more clinical, ruthless and consistent than their hosts. Whereas Monivea were soundly beaten by ten points in Westport, Connemara won by 11 and while Monivea won at Corinthians the Clifden based side faced a much stronger Corinthian outfit when they lost at the Cloonacauneen venue.

Ulster Previews

Clogher Valley v Dromore

Millar McCall Wylie Junior Cup

Round 2: Saturday (2:30)

Clogher Valley v Ballymena 2nds

After a difficult few weeks, Clogher got back on track with a barnstorming home win last weekend scoring five tries in a 38-5 win over Dromore. Matt Armstrong and Phil McVitty each scored a brace of tries in a seven try rout. They are clear favourites here too but what of Ballymena?

Well they have good recent pedigree in this competition and they are here thanks to an impressive 19-17 win at Coleraine in round one with full back Rory Drysdalke, outside centre Johnny McMillan and winger Rossborough all scoring. They have the pace but the power comes from the home side.

Home by 5

Caption: Action from Clogher Valley’s 38-5 win over Dromore last weekend in Qualifying Legaue 1. Pic: Stephen Hetherington, Clogher Valley RFC website.

Ulster Qualifying League Stats

Bangor Portadown

The weekend’s action in Ulster had plenty of drama, from try scoring open displays by Ballyclare, CIYMS and Clogher Valley to an upset win from Bangor and an encouraging display from Cooke in the derby.

Game by Game stats

CIYMS 56, Ballymoney 12

CIYMS Scorers: Matt Armstrong and Phi McVitty 2 tries each; Jason Gilliland, Duncan Gleadhill and Harry Howard 1 try each; Sam Baker 8 cons. 
Ballymoney :TBC

Clogher Valley 38, Dromore 5

Clogher Valley Scorers: Kyle Cobane, Richard Prmrose, John Clarke, David Sharkey and Philip Falconer 1 try each;  Paul Armstrong 1 try, 4 con.
Dromore Scorers and Team TBC

Leinster Sunday Wrap

Newbridge Longford

Leinster League – Division 1b

League Wrap in Brief: There was no stand out result on Sunday in Division 1b quite simply because all four results were hugely significant.

The Tullow revival is on again it seems, they’ve gone from briliant to poor to brilliant again in three weeks, their best result came Sunday winning by a point at Estuary Road against Malahide. Newly promoted Wexford side Gorey top the pile with three wins from three after a hard earned home win over Wicklow.

In Rosetown, Longford produced their best display of the seaosn to get the better of Newbridge and deny the  hosts even a losing bonus point while at Oak Park, County Carlow produced thier best display so far but it still wasn’t enough as a determined Kilkenny dug out the win.

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