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All Roads Lead To Dubarry Park

All Roads Lead To Dubarry Park

The finals of the AIB Cup and AIB Junior Cup will take place this Saturday (April 14) at Athlone’s Dubarry Park, the home of Buccaneers RFC. See below for more.

Dublin club Seapoint, featuring Ireland Under-20 full-back Felix Jones, take on Ulster side Coleraine in the Junior final, kicking off at 2pm. This is likely to be a lively contest for national honours.

Garryowen, still very much in contention for the Division One title, face Belfast Harlequins, who have enjoyed a remarkable change in fortunes since the start of the year, in the Senior final which has a 4pm start.

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This promises to be a top-class affair between two sides who love to play expansive rugby. Garryowen will look to the experience and strength of Conor Kilroy, John O’Sullivan, Paul Neville and Peter Malone to provide them with a winning platform. In Gerry Hurley, Ciaran and Cillian O’Boyle, Kieran Hartigan and Mark Melbourne they have quality, developing players who relish quick rugby.

Harlequins, who lost their opening nine league on the trot to languish at the foot of Division One, have really turned their season around since Christmas when Alan Solomons came in to assist with coaching. They have started to clock up successive wins and surprised a strong Shannon side in their cup semi-final.

Former Ireland flanker Andy Ward is their key operator as player-coach, while in Stuart Philpott, Paul Marshall, Darren Cave and John Andress, they have four rising Ulster stars. Lewis Stevenson and Mark Kettyle are two others with huge potential.

So, a feast of open rugby looks on the cards in the midlands on Saturday. Cash will be taken at the turnstiles on the day, so come along for what promises to be two very entertaining deciders.