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AIB Cup: Clonakilty On The Road To Glory?

AIB Cup: Clonakilty On The Road To Glory?

Clonakilty and Garryowen meet next Saturday in an eagerly-awaited AIB Cup semi-final (Dooradoyle, kick-off 2.30pm), and strangely enough it will be the Munster clubs’ first ever clash in an AIB competition.

Clonakilty are on the road again this weekend and chasing more silverware. Having been crowned Division Three champions in last season’s AIB League, they are now the Division Two standard bearers in the AIB Cup. They travel to Dooradoyle this weekend with the hope of a major upset and a place in the final.

This fixture will indeed be an historic occasion as it is the first time that the two Munster-based clubs will meet in an AIB competition. They previously met in the Munster League in September 2004, and on that occasion, Garryowen were victorious on a scoreline of 30-8.

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Clonakilty, the only Division Two side left in the AIB Cup, surprised Terenure College with a 31-22 win in the quarter-finals to advance to the last-four, whilst Garryowen secured their place in the semi-finals with a three point win over Dublin outfit, St. Mary’s College.

Currently third place in the AIB League Division Two table, Clonakilty boast an excellent record. They have won three, drawn one and lost one of their AIB League fixtures against Munster clubs. They qualified for the AIB Cup by being one of five clubs to progress past the second round of this season’s Munster Senior Cup and beat Greystones 8-0 in the AIB Cup’s first round at Shannonvale Cross on January 13.

Garryowen, who are in fifth place in AIB League Division One, reached the semi-final after beating Buccaneers 16-13 in the cup’s first round. Garryowen also reached the semi-finals of the inaugural AIB Cup last year and on that occasion they lost 23-14 at home to St. Mary’s College. They will be keen to avenge that result and progress to the final this year.

Clonakilty and Garryowen are two of the three Munster clubs competing in the AIB Cup semi-finals next Saturday, along with Shannon who will travel to Deramore Park to take on Belfast Harlequins.

The AIB Cup final will be played on Saturday, April 14 at Dubarry Park, the home of Buccaneers RFC in Athlone.