The draw has been made for the Round Robin series of matches which make up the All-Ireland Provincial League Championship, with Dundalk, Clonmel, Instonians and the Connacht qualifiers battling it out to gain a place in next season’s Ulster Bank League.
2014/15 ALL-IRELAND PROVINCIAL LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP FIXTURES:
– All matches to kick off at 2.30pm
Saturday, March 28 –
Instonians v Dundalk; Clonmel v Connacht qualifiers
Saturday, April 11 –
Connacht qualifiers v Instonians; Dundalk v Clonmel
Saturday, April 18 –
Connacht qualifiers v Dundalk; Instonians v Clonmel
Saturday, April 25 –
Play-off between the Round Robin series winners and the third-from-bottom side in Division 2B
Instonians are hoping to bounce straight back from being relegated from the Ulster Bank League last season. They were crowned Ulster Qualifying League 1 champions just last night following a 19-13 win away to Dromore.
Inst now go on to represent Ulster in the Round Robin series and they will be full of confidence after competing a league and cup double in their province. They won the Millar McCall Wylie Junior Cup earlier in the season.
The Belfast club have been given a favourable draw in the All-Ireland Provincial League Championship with two home games, while the Connacht qualifiers will also benefit from home advantage in two of the three rounds.
The Connacht representatives will not be known until after the final league match (Connemara v Ballina) has been played next Tuesday. Monivea are currently top of the table with a one-point lead, but second-placed Connemara could leapfrog them on St. Patrick’s Day and clinch the provincial title.
First-time Ulster Bank Junior Cup champions Dundalk won the Leinster Junior League crown last Saturday, finishing their impressive domestic campaign with 12 wins from 14 games. Ene Fa’atau’s charges are sure to give it their all in the coming weeks in pursuit of senior status.
That is very much the case too for Denis Leamy’s Clonmel side, who are in buoyant form after winning the Munster Junior League for the first time in the club’s 123-year history.
Leamy’s men have enjoyed a brilliant run of results, securing the Munster Junior Cup, Munster Junior Clubs Cup and Munster Junior League Division 1 titles since last May.
In the All-Ireland Provincial League Championship, the points scoring system is the same as it is in the Ulster Bank League. With the league moving to five divisions in 2015/16, the clubs are fighting for the final spot in the newly-introduced ten-team Division 2C.
For that Division 2C place, the Round Robin series winners will play off against the team that finishes third-from-bottom in Division 2B on Saturday, April 25. The Division 2B club will have home advantage.