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Ulster Bank League: Division 2A Previews

Ulster Bank League: Division 2A Previews

Division 2A resumes after a month long break and the key tie is the meeting of the top two clubs as Old Wesley travel to Dublin rivals Blackrock College.

ULSTER BANK LEAGUE: DIVISION 2A: Saturday, January 24

Kick-off 2.30pm unless stated –

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Banbridge (8th) v Nenagh Ormond (6th), Rifle Park

Just two points separate these sides as they kick off the second half the Ulster Bank League season. Banbridge had a huge win over Dungannon in their last outing back in December, while Nenagh Ormond were beaten at home by Naas.

The new league structures mean that the teams finishing third to tenth will maintain their Division 2A status.

Bective Rangers (14th) v Cashel (7th), Donnybrook

Bective look to be in for tough time in 2015 and if they cannot climb up the table, they are destined for Division 2B next season.

Cashel, currently in seventh place, are one of six clubs all within a handful of points of each other. Can they claim an away win to boost their chances?

Blackrock College (2nd) v Old Wesley (1st), Stradbrook

A match with huge significance for the league as the top two teams go head to head at Stradbrook on Saturday. On a historic note, this is the first time since 1997 that these two venerable Dublin clubs have met in an All-Ireland League contest.

Current Old Wesley President Dave Bursey featured in the match as did some club stalwarts from both sides.

‘Rock won that clash eighteen years ago on a 12-11 scoreline. For more on that encounter, click here. An away victory this time could put Wesley out of sight as they are already six points clear.

Naas (10th) v Queen’s University (3rd), Forenaughts

Naas picked up just their third victory of the campaign in their last outing with a good win away to Nenagh Ormond. They will be hoping that the ensuing break will not have dented that form as they play host to third-placed Queen’s on Saturday.

The Ulster side are just three points behind Blackrock in the chase for promotion but will need to be firmly focused on this game to stay in contention.

NUIM Barnhall (5th) v Seapoint (16th), Parsonstown

Barnhall’s two-point win over Naas back on December 6 keeps them in the pack chasing the top spots, but it is a tight pack so every win counts from here on.

Seapoint, on just nine points, are struggling, their last triumph coming against Thomond back in November.

You would have to bank on a home win but the nature of it will say much about the intent for the rest of the season.

Rainey Old Boys (12th) v UCC (11th), Hatrick Park

Level on 15 points, the Cork side’s slightly better points difference has them just ahead going into this game.

UCC are also difficult enough to beat having picked up three losing bonus points in their five losses. Home advantage may tell in Rainey’s favour, but you cannot rule out the students.

Skerries (4th) v City of Derry (14th), Holmpatrick

Skerries are motoring along nicely in fourth place but if they are to be serious promotion contenders they need to pick up the pace.

A win on Saturday would certainly keep the pressure on Queen’s University, Blackrock College and Old Wesley.

City of Derry are having a tough season and while four losing bonus points are testament to their tenacity in games, they would much prefer to be on the other side of that this weekend.

Thomond (9th) v Dungannon (16th), Liam Fitzgerald Park

Four wins and four losses have the Limerick side mid-table at the halfway point in the season. Thomond’s last victory came back in November so they will be keen to set that to rights on Saturday.

Dungannon are still struggling and look set to be in the relegation dogfight come the tail end of the season.