FORMER Garryowen head coach, Paul Cunningham did the ‘light blues’ a significant favour on Saturday when his current charges Old Belvedere defeated struggling Ballynahinch in Division 1A of the All-Ireland League.
Second-from-bottom ‘Hinch did pick up a losing bonus point in their 23-17 defeat to title-chasing Belvo’, however. The result leaves the Ulster side three points clear of bottom-placed Garryowen with just five rounds of fixtures to come in the top flight.
Next up for Garryowen is a crucial fixture with Munster rivals Cork Con at Dooradoyle on Saturday next, 2.30pm.
Resilient Shannon moved up to fifth place in the Division 1B table with a smashing 10-5 home win over promotion-chasing Corinthians in a re-arranged fixture at Coonagh yesterday.
Hooker Liam Cronin crossed for the Shannon try, while Tadhg Bennett, lining out on the wing, kicked the conversion and a penalty goal.
Shannon’s win is all the more notable as it was only the second defeat second-placed Corinthians have suffered in Division 1B this season.
Shannon’s line-up included David Quinlan at number eight and Rob Guerin at out-half.
The vastly experienced David O’Donovan partnered Tadhg Leader in the centre.
In Division 2A, Bruff’s relegation worries have intensified with a disappointing 32-5 thumping away to Seapoint.
Bottom side Bruff remain rooted to the foot of the table and are now in real danger of being relegated in the All-Ireland League for a second successive season.
Bruff currently lie seven points adrift of second-from-bottom Old Crescent and are nine points adrfit of 14th-placed Naas.
There are now just three rounds of regular season fixtures to go.
A full round of All-Ireland League games are set to take place next Saturday (2.30pm).
While much of the attention in 1A will centre around Garryowen’s crucial home tie with Cork Con’, elsewhere Young Munster travel to title-chasing Old Belvedere.
Highlight in 1B is a fascinating-looking local derby between UL-Bohs and Shannon and Annacotty. Promotion chasing Thomond travel to Armagh in Division 2B.