The title is on the line in Division 1A but there are key relegation and promotion matches to be decided, with the destination of the Division 1B title still a threeway race and Ulster Bank League status on the line for Ards and Monivea. Here is our quick guide to the action this weekend.
ULSTER BANK LEAGUE DIVISION 1A:
St. Mary’s College will be crowned champions if they beat Young Munster at Templeville Road on Saturday. Lose and Clontarf can take the honours with a win over Lansdowne on the Aviva Stadium’s main pitch.
The Drop Zone
10th place gets relegated to Division 1B, ninth faces a play-off against the team coming in second in Division 1B. Blackrock College, who face Garryowen at Stradbrook on Saturday, occupy the drop zone place and trail Old Belvedere by three points
Champions in 2011, ‘Belvo face a repeat of that final against Cork Constitution and must win to avoid the drop if ‘Rock win. They could still face a play-off for their Division 1A spot regardless of the result.
Shannon are third-from-bottom and travel to Dolphin with survival in mind. Lose and they could face the play-off game. Win and they are safe.
ULSTER BANK LEAGUE DIVISION 1B:
The game between UL Bohemians and Belfast Harlequins could decide the destination of the Division 1B trophy depending on the result between UCD and Dungannon.
‘Quins need a bonus point win to secure the title if Dungannon secure one in Dublin, otherwise points deifference could see them finish in second place.
The Drop Zone
In addition to the title and promotion being at stake, the UCD v Dungannon game at Belfield may also decide who is relagated along with UCC to Division 2A.
Bruff are at home to Buccaneers and need to win if UCD stage an upset. Mathematically Galwegians could be caught out if both UCD and Bruff secured bonus point wins, so a result against Ballynahinch is needed for them to be safe.
ULSTER BANK LEAGUE DIVISION 2A:
Dublin University were crowned champions last weekend at College Park, while Malone secured second place and promotion with a big win over Seapoint to boost their points difference ahead of Queen’s University.
The Drop Zone
Clonakilty and Instonians have been relegated and will play in Division 2B next season, but Thomond face a play-off against Highfield who finished third in Division 2B.
Highfield have been efficient all season and capitalised on NUIM Barnhall’s last day slip up to take the third spot. This Limerick v Cork clash could be a tough one!
ULSTER BANK LEAGUE DIVISION 2B:
Cashel completed the season with a home win to secure not just the title but an incredible 15 wins out of 15. They had some narrow scrapes along the way but are very deserving winners and will challenge for honours in Division 2A next season.
Banbridge secured second place and promotion despite losing their last three games – all by narrow margins. Connemara’s win over NUIM Barnhall left the Kildare club with nothing to show for a strong season.
The Drop Zone
In the end Wanderers fought gamely and under recently installed coach Greg Lynch they ran Cashel close and picked up three wins, but it was not enough and they are relegated to Provincial League status.
Ards also battled the odds and still have a shot at survival when they host Monivea in a play-off at Hamilton Park on Saturday.
The Galway side finished second in the Provincial Qualifying Round Robin series to Skerries, and were also beaten finalists in the Ulster Bank All-Ireland Junior Cup.
All in all, there is a lot at stake in the Ulster Bank League this weekend.
ULSTER BANK LEAGUE FIXTURES: Saturday, April 21
Kick-off 2.35pm unless stated –
Blackrock College v Garryowen, Stradbrook
Cork Constitution v Old Belvedere, Temple Hill
Dolphin v Shannon, Musgrave Park
Lansdowne v Clontarf, Aviva Stadium main pitch
St. Mary’s College v Young Munster, Templeville Road (live on RTÉ Two/www.rte.ie)
Kick-off 2.30pm unless stated –
Ballymena v UCC, Eaton Park
Ballynahinch v Galwegians, Ballymacarn Park
Bruff v Buccaneers, Kilballyowen Park
UL Bohemians v Belfast Harlequins, Annacotty
UCD v Dungannon, Belfield
DIVISION 2A/2B RELEGATION/PROMOTION PLAY-OFF:
Thomond v Highfield, Liam Fitzgerald Park, 2.30pm
DIVISION 2B/PROVINCIAL LEAGUE RELEGATION/PROMOTION PLAY-OFF:
Ards v Monivea, Hamilton Park, 2.30pm
Related Links –
Ulster Bank League Results Service: Send UBL to 51444. To unsubscribe send the word STOP to 0876445950 or search #UBL on Twitter