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Ulster Bank League: Division 2A Previews

Ulster Bank League: Division 2A Previews

It is looking tight at the top of Division 2A with only ten points separating Dublin University in first place from Old Wesley in sixth spot. Every game counts now in the race for promotion.

ULSTER BANK LEAGUE: DIVISION 2B: Saturday, February 4

Kick-off 2.30pm unless stated

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City of Derry (11th) v De La Salle Palmerston (2nd), Judge’s Road

City of Derry won on the road last weekend in Clonakilty to push them into 11th place. Their early season struggles with life in Division 2A may not be over yet though as a high scoring DLSP come calling.

‘Salmo relinquished top spot to Dublin University before Christmas but were back to winning ways at home to Malone last Saturday.

The visitors will want to keep the pressure on, so expect them go all out to take the points at Judge’s Road on Saturday afternoon.

Corinthians (9th) v Clonakilty (16th), Corinthian Park

Corinthians are in a chasing pack outside the top four that includes Seapoint, Bective and Terenure all with points tallies in the low 20s.

They lost on the road to Terenure last weekend, so will be looking for their first win of 2012 on Saturday.

Clonakilty made City of Derry work hard for their points last weekend but they are still on the bottom rung. They badly need another win if they are to overtake Midleton, whom they beat in December, at the foot of the table.

Dublin University (1st) v Malone (5th), College Park

This match could have a big effect on the standings come Saturday evening. Dublin University are ten points ahead but Malone picked up a losing bonus against ‘Salmo last weekend and will want a scalp.

This is Malone’s third game on the trot against top three sides and having beaten Queen’s and picked up a losing bonus against ‘Salmo, they are setting down a marker.

College Park could see a lively game on Saturday, therefore, but Malone will need to work hard to break down the home side’s defence.

Midleton (15th) v Thomond (14th), Towns Park

Midleton lie second from bottom just a point ahead of Clonakilty and seven points adrift of their visitors on Saturday, Thomond.

The Corkmen have lost eight of their nine games, including one to Clon, but have managed four losing bonus points that may yet be their lifeline.

Thomond shipped 37 points at home to Dublin University last weekend and last won in the league against Terenure back in early December. Expect the visitors to shade it in a tight affair.

Old Crescent (12th) v Instonians (13th), Rosbrien

Contrasting fortunes against Dublin clubs last weekend for Old Crescent and Seapoint. The Limerick team lost on the road to Bective, while the Belfast side picked up a valuable win over Seapoint.

Neither side has hit a rich vein of form this season in what is a very tough division and a loss here would have either club looking warily over their shoulders at the likes of Thomond, Midleton and Clonakilty.

Instonians look capable of scoring but their defensive lapses see the home side as marginal favourites for this game.

Old Wesley (6th) v Bective Rangers (8th), Donnybrook

The pre-match lunch will be as competitive as the game itself when these Donnybrook neighbours meet on Saturday.

Hosts Old Wesley are also holding a players reunion and inviting anyone who ever wore the Wesley colours along to the clubhouse.

In times gone by, Donnybrook was a byword for a right good dust-up at the local market and we could be in for a real humdinger here

Local bragging rights aside, there are some valuable league points at stake also. This game is well worth catching on Saturday afternoon if you are in the area.

Seapoint (7th) v Queen’s University (3rd), Kilbogget Park

Seapoint kicked off 2012 with a loss to old Division 3 rivals Instonians, but they have established themselves in their maiden season at this level and pose a challenge to any side that comes to Kilbogget Park.

Queen’s University have rediscovered their try -scoring ways this season and have a massive +115 points difference – the best in the division.

The visitors are just five points behind their student rivals from Trinity and will be hoping that Malone do them a favour on Saturday if they can take the points in their own game.

Terenure College (10th) v Greystones (4th), Lakelands Park

Terenure College picked up a big home win over Corinthians last Saturday that saw them keep pace with the mid-table chasing pack.

Greystones have fared best of the four teams promoted at the start of the season and with seven wins under their belts, they are just five points off the lead.

That said this is a Leinster derby, so form can sometimes go out the window. Still the County Wicklow side should be strong enough to take the four points on offer at Lakelands.