18 May, 11:09
IRFU Chief Executive Philip Browne has issued a statement following confirmation of Ronan O'Gara's decision to retire from playing professional rugby.
The biggest threat to Buccs will most likely be presented by western neighbours Galwegians who produced a remarkabe recovery in Stradbrook to come from being 31-5 down to win 33-31. They are now in fifth place on the same points as Buccaneers (39) but they face a difficult run-in with games against Clontarf (home) and Lansdowne (away).
For their part Buccaneers travel to play UCD next and end with a home game against Ballymena. By then, Ballymena should have secured their place in the semi-final - they host relegated Terenure College next, which would leave Buccs in a very strong position to make the knock-outs.
At the bottom of the table, Terenure College finally succumbed to the inevitable, their 25-17 defeat at home to Cork Constitution bringing an end to their tenure in Division One. Who will join them remains to be seen with UL Bohemians and Co Carlow the obvious candidates, but UCD now also in the drop-zone following that decisive 31-18 defeat in Oak Park. However, with Bohs and Carlow scheduled to meet in the final round, UCD should hang on. The issue of who will join Terenure could be decided before that Thomond Park meeting.
Next up for Co Carlow is a home game against Blackrock and more than a reasonable chance of four points, but Ul Bohemians travel next to Dooradoyle and if they were to lose there, they'd need a bonus point to avoid making that final game, one of no consequence.