Just like Division 2A, the top two teams in Division 2B are from Ulster – City of Derry, with a perfect ten points, and Rainey Old Boys just two points behind. Both sides are also on the road this weekend.
ULSTER BANK LEAGUE: DIVISION 2B: Saturday, September 26
Kick-off 2.30pm unless stated –
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Bective Rangers (7th) v Rainey Old Boys (2nd), Donnybrook
Bective’s bright start to the league came to a sudden halt in their second game when table toppers City of Derry handed them a 40-17 beating. Their inside centre Rob O’Beirn had stood out so far with three tries.
This weekend they face second-placed Rainey who narrowly edged out their first two opponents, with centre Jody McMurray’s hat-trick of tries the highlight against MU Barnhall last week. Bective will hope that the Donnybrook factor will give them the bounce they need.
Armagh (6th) v Highfield (4th), Palace Grounds
Won one and lost one for both of these clubs in the opening rounds of the league. Armagh’s matches have been decided by a single point either way and another closely-fought game is in prospect here.
Similarly, Highfield have had two tight encounters so far. Their player-coach Timmy Ryan was among the try scorers during last week’s Cork derby win over Sunday’s Well.
Dungannon (5th) v Greystones (3rd), Stevenson Park
Andrew Hughes’ young Dungannon charges made up for their opening day loss with a strong win over Seapoint last weekend. Full-back Paul Armstrong was at his metronomic best, tallying up 23 points from seven penalties and a conversion.
Their opposition this Saturday comes from further down the east coast as Greystones travel north. The Co. Wicklow side are two from two, and a third win would be a very bright start indeed. It may well come down to a place-kicking battle between Armstrong and ‘Stones ace Barry Lynn.
Seapoint (8th) v MU Barnhall (9th), Kilbogget Park
Not the brightest of starts for these two clubs with both on a solitary losing bonus point. Saturday offers them the chance for their first win of the season.
The losing side faces the prospect of staying rooted to the bottom of the table. Home advantage suggest Seapoint should claim the points, particularly if backs Conor Byrne and Rory Conway can get over the try-line again.
Sunday’s Well (10th) v City of Derry (1st), Irish Independent Park
Bottom against top at Irish Independent Park on Saturday afternoon as Sunday’s Well, smarting from their derby defeat by Highfield, host high-flying City of Derry.
The Cork side’s lone league point so far came in their opening loss to Greystones, and their discipline will have to improve after two yellow cards last time out.
City of Derry are flying at the top with two try-scoring bonuses and although their hosts this weekend have always been a wily lot, in-form half-backs Neil Burns and Andrew Semple should inspire the Ulstermen to win number three.