Can anyone catch Nenagh Ormond? Sligo step up the plate this weekend as the action resumes in Division 2B of the Ulster Bank League.
ULSTER BANK LEAGUE: DIVISION 2B: Saturday, January 11
Kick-off 2.30pm unless stated –
Instonians (14th) v Armagh (4th), Shaws Bridge
Inst are currently in a very dangerous spot in 14th place but there’s plenty of rugby to be played yet.
Armagh appear to be in good health in 4th spot and contention for promotion or playoff spot but they need to keep winning – starting with Saturday.
An Ulster derby with more at stake than just regional pride in Shaws Bridge – could be interesting.
Navan (6th) v Greystones (2nd), Balreask Old
Navan’s last outing before the Christmas break was a convincing win against local rivals Boyne, while Greystones came out on top at home to Skerries.
Navan are just the right side of the win/loss balance sheet and their mid table position reflects that.
The Co. Wicklow club lead the pack chasing Nenagh Ormond and with six wins and three try bonuses they have to be favourites on Saturday.
Richmond (15th) v Ards (10th), Richmond Park
Just three points separate the sides showing just how difficult life can be in Division 2B.
This is a big swing game then with Richmond poised to overtake Ards if they win.
The trip to Limerick will be tough for Ards but they know how to survive these games.
Skerries (5th) v Thomond (3rd), Holmpatrick
Skerries lost out by 7 in their last game but they will be well supported as they go in search of a win at home on Saturday.
Thomond travel on the back of a pre-Christmas win over Inst. that sees them going well in 3rd place.
A tough test for the Limerick side but if they can notch up a win they will set out their stall for the rest of the season.
Sligo (12th) v Nenagh Ormond (1st), Hamilton Park
Sligo are in that post Christmas danger zone when a result or two can define the rest of their season.
Should they topple the unbeaten league leaders they give themselves some breathing space.
The challenge is of course a big one: seven wins and four try bonuses for Nenagh Ormond. Their challenge is sustain that against all comers.
Sundays Well (11th) v De La Salle Palmerston (8th), Musgrave Park
Like Sligo and Ards, the Well need some breathing space if they are to keep clear of trouble. Their December win over Midleton helped and another on Saturday would be spot on.
DLSP also won in their last game of 2013 to lie four points ahead of their hosts.
A tough trip to Muzzer but the Dublin side could come away with the result.
Suttonians (16th) v Boyne (13th), JJ McDowell Memorial Park
This one is all about the impending relegation battle. A home win would be the first of the season for Suttonians and would offer a shred of hope.
It would also mire Boyne in the red zone. That said the visitors should have the wherewithal to get a result in Dublin 13 on Saturday.
Tullamore (7th) v Midleton (9th), Spollanstown
Tullamore’s three wins and a draw edges Midleton’s three wins and four losses in this mid table clash.
The midland side won at home in their last game while the visitors lost at home.
That makes Tullamore the favourites to take the points in Spollanstown on Saturday.