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Ulster Bank League: Division 2A Previews

Ulster Bank League: Division 2A Previews

It has been a long winter break for the teams in Divisions 2A with no matches since December 10. Dublin University lead the way but only five points separate them from Greystones in fifth place. Momentum will be key in this half of the season.


Kick-off 2.30pm unless stated –

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Bective Rangers (9th) v Old Crescent (11th), Donnybrook

Bective Rangers are mid-table with four wins and four defeats to date. Their points difference is also finely balanced. They won their last game against Corinthians on a 6-3 scoreline.

Visitors Old Crescent were beaten at home by Greystones in their last outing in the league, so they will be keen to kick start 2012 with a win that would see them overtake Bective who are two points ahead of them in the standings.

Clonakilty (16th) v City of Derry (12th), Shannonvale Cross

Clonakilty got their first win of the season back in December so it will be interesting to see if the break has helped or hindered them.

City of Derry make their longest trip of the season to west Cork wondering the same thing. They have struggled with the transition from Division 2B picking up only three wins to date, the last coming against Instonians back in December.

The Ulster club should be favourites for this game but they will be made to fight all the way at Shannonvale on Saturday.

De La Salle Palmerston (2nd) v Malone (6th), College Park

De La Salle Palmerston set the early pace in this division and with 28 points to their name they are only two behind leaders Dublin University.

Their three-point loss to the students saw them overtaken before Christmas but they remain one of the teams to beat.

Malone are just four points behind them so Saturday’s game could have a big impact on the top of the table if the Ulster side can grab a result.

Greystones (5th) v Midleton (15th), Dr. Hickey Park

Greystones’ win over Old Crescent in December saw them holding steady in fifth place but with just five points separating them from the table toppers, they can look forward to an interesting second half of the season.

Midleton are struggling at the bottom of the table and their loss to Clonakilty before Christmas could yet prove costly if the bottom club find a rich vein of form.

A home win is on the cards here but the margin may well give a pointer to the rest of the season for both sides.

Instonians (14th) v Seapoint (7th), Shaw’s Bridge

These two clubs met in early February last year at Kilbogget Park. Instonians ran out 24-17 winners and both sides went on to secure promotion.

Seapoint have managed the transition somewhat better with five successes from their eight games while Instonians are nine points behind them with only two wins.

‘Inst could do with a win to stave off pressure from Midleton or Clonakilty, while an away victory would see Seapoint pushing for a top four spot.

Queen’s University (3rd) v Old Wesley (4th), Dub Lane

This is the tie of the weekend in Division 2A. The clubs are level on 25 points and between them have earned six try-scoring bonus points and four losing bonus points.

Old Wesley have scored over 200 points already this season, the only side to do so in Division 2A, while Queen’s are just four points off that mark but have conceded fewer.

All to play for then at Dub Lane with the likes of Seapoint, Malone and Greystones poised to vault over the losing team.

Terenure College (10th) v Corinthians (8th), Lakelands

Terenure College are four points adrift of their visitors but they did pick up their third win in the last round of games. A surprising 32-12 triumph that could yet cost Old Wesley a shot at the title.

Corinthians lost to Bective last time out so they will be keen to show some of that Connacht spirit when they face another club from the capital on Saturday.

An away win could be on the cards unless ‘Nure can replicate their form from that derby success pre-Christmas.

Thomond (13th) v Dublin University (1st), Liam Fitzgerald Park

Despite losing to Seapoint in their last game, Thomond, on 15 points, look to be clear of the relegation struggle but they will need more wins.

Dublin University will travel to Limerick with an excellent record – seven wins in eight games – but they need to sustain that sort of form.

The hosts would like nothing better than to knock the Dublin students off their perch. A difficult game then but the visitors should have the resources to take the points.