The IRFU have announced the fixtures for the forthcoming Ulster Bank League season and following on from the success of last year's 'Friday Night Lights' games, the evening kick-offs continue and Division 1A sees the return of semi-finals and a final for the 2014/15 campaign.
Reigning Division 1A champions Clontarf will take on Young Munster at Castle Avenue in the first league fixture of their title defence. The league opens on Friday, September 12 and Saturday, September 13.
Last year's runners-up Old Belvedere host Bateman Cup holders Cork Constitution in round 1, while new boys Terenure College take on Ballynahinch who beat Buccaneers in a play-off to maintain their top flight status.
The semi-finals in Division 1A are scheduled to take place on Saturday, April 25 with the final taking place two weeks later on Saturday May 9.
'Friday Night Lights' matches and local derbies such as the keenly contested Cork Constitution v Dolphin or title holders Clontarf v Old Belvedere are already in the schedule with more games to be announced at the start of the season.
In Division 1B the opening round of fixtures sees the clash of two Limerick heavyweights as Garryowen, relegated from Division 1A last term, welcome Shannon to Dooradoyle.
The two clubs promoted from Division 2A, Galwegians and Ballymena, host Dublin University and Corinthians respectively while Buccs, who missed out on a place in the top division last term, will travel to Malone in round 1.
Newly-promoted Nenagh Ormond face a tough test in their opening Division 2A fixture as they face a Dungannon side freshly relegated from Division 1B.
Blackrock College, also relegated from the second tier, will make the short trip to NUIM Barnhall in the opening round. Both Skerries and Thomond won promotion to Division 2A last year and will face Old Wesley and Queen's University respectively in round 1.
The two Limerick sides relegated from Division 2A last term, Bruff and Old Crescent, will start the 2014/15 campaign with home fixtures against Highfield and Armagh respectively.
After two seasons in junior rugby, Wanderers return to the Ulster Bank League and will host Sunday's Well in their opening fixture. Fellow promoted side Kanturk - making their first steps as a senior club - are on the road to Navan first time out.
The IRFU would like to invite applications for the position of Participation Rugby Operations Manager. Reporting to the Participation Rugby Manager, the role holder will lead the operational delivery of IRFU's game wide strategy for TAG/Touch/Play Rugby programmes implemented by the IRFU and Provincial Branches.
Portlaoise RFC played host to hundreds of boys and girls from all over Ireland in the second Aviva Mini Rugby Festival of the season. We caught up with Ireland's Rhys Ruddock and Nora Stapleton and some of the young players at last Saturday's event. There was also a guest appearance by the Men's and Women's RBS 6 Nations trophies.
Adam Griggs came off the bench to score the match-winning try as Lansdowne beat Cork Constitution 27-20 to secure home advantage in the Ulster Bank League play-offs. Two players who caught the eye during the game were Cork Con winger Darren Sweetnam and Lansdowne centre Tom Farrell.
The IRFU, Jamie Heaslip, Rob Kearney and the ISPCC have joined forces to 'Stand up against Bullying' with the development of a new 'Shield your Club' toolkit which will allow rugby clubs review, audit and improve their anti-bullying policies. Clubs can email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
The Ireland Club team will play French Clubs at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday night after the RBS 6 Nations clash. We spoke to captain Matt D'Arcy, centre Mark Roche and head coach Paul Cunningham. Match tickets are on sale from www.ticketmaster.ie.
The Irish Rugby Football Union and the CARA National Adapted Physical Activity Centre, in conjunction with the Department of Justice and Equality, have launched the Xcessible Youth Sport Initiative 'Special Schools Tag Rugby'.
Rory Scannell turned in a man-of-the-match performance at out-half as his 24-point haul, including two terrific individual tries, helped Dolphin claim a bonus point in Saturday's 34-15 Ulster Bank League win over UCD in Cork.
Lansdowne have moved seven points clear at the top of Ulster Bank League Division 1A, but they had to endure a nerve-jangling finish against Old Belvedere whose goal-kicker Josh Glynn missed a late conversion on the Aviva Stadium's back pitch.
Mick McGrath is one of the latest players to make the step up from Ulster Bank League rugby to the professional game. The young Leinster winger has scored tries against Cardiff and Edinburgh so far this season.
Speaking at the launch of the Ulster Bank League Awards, Ireland assistant coach Les Kiss says he loves getting out to watch club rugby with one of his recent games being Armagh v Greystones in Division 2B.
Ulster Bank rugby ambassador Alan Quinlan talks about the importance of the Ulster Bank League to Irish rugby - as a pathway to the professional game and a platform for players to represent their local communities.
Irish Rugby TV brings you highlights of UCD's Ulster Bank League Division 1A win over Lansdowne, with Ireland Under-20 out-half Ross Byrne scoring a try and three penalties for the victorious students.