Limerick rugby sides fight for vital AIL points

Leader Reporter


Leader Reporter


Limerick rugby sides fight for vital AIL points

SIXTEEN down, two to go. The seven Limerick senior AIL sides face a massive round of games this weekend as the league reaches its final two fixtures.

In Division 1A, Garryowen travel to bottom side Buccaneers knowing that a five pointer is a must to cement their place in the playoffs this season.

Garryowen are two points ahead of Clontarf, who themselves face struggling St Mary's, so it could well come down to who is more clinical this weekend. Conan Doyle's side were 29-17 winners over the Connacht side when they met in round two. If Buccaneers were to lose, they will be relegated back to Division 1B after just one season.

Another Limerick side looking to break into the top four in Division 1B are Young Munsters.

The ‘Cookies’ are sixth and are three points behind Garryowen. Should Gearoid Prendergast's men not get a bonus point win against leaders Lansdowne at Tom Clifford this Saturday, their hopes of a fourth top four spot in a row will look to be all but gone.

In Division 1B, Shannon, winners over Dolphin last weekend, travel to play Old Belvedere. The Tom Hayes coached side are currently second, just one point behind Ballynahinch.

However, the men from the ‘Isle’ are level on points with Banbridge. With these three talented teams fighting it out for one automatic promotion spot, it looks as if this division is going down to the last round on April 14.

In the same division, UL Bohemian host Naas. The ‘Robins' are currently in the relegation play off spot, so a win is a must as they try and chase Ballymena who are just two points ahead of them.

With Old Crescent already promoted from Division 2B, attention turns to whether or not they can go through the season unbeaten. Next up for Eugene McGovern's side is an away trip to Barnhall. This will be a tough away trip as Barnhall are still chasing a play off spot themselves.

In Division 2C, two Limerick sides are in action at opposite ends of the table.

Table toppers Thomond host ninth placed Tullamore, while eight placed Bruff host Bective Rangers at Kilballyowen.

Thomond, should they win, could clinch promotion if Sligo and Omagh both lose. Arguably the highlight of the All Ireland league this season has been the performance of Old Crescent, but kudos must also go to James Hickey of Thomond who has brought his side to the brink of promotion in just his first year in charge of the blues.