Only points difference separates Naas and Banbridge at the top of Division 2A as we enter the final few rounds. The Kildare side meet third place UCC in a crucial tie this weekend.
ULSTER BANK LEAGUE: DIVISION 2A: Saturday, March 5
Kick-off 2.30pm unless stated
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Banbridge (2nd) v Thomond (9th), Rifle Park
An important game for promotion and relegation. A win at home keeps Banbridge right in the hunt for automatic promotion.
Against that Thomond need a win to keep ahead of Corinthians, albeit they still face a relegation playoff if they finish in 9th.
You’d have to back the Ulster club, although Thomond did win the reverse match at the start of the season.
Cashel (6th) v Skerries (8th), Spafield
Cashel are mid table but not without a shot at a 4th place playoff – they’re only three points behind local rivals Nenagh Ormond.
Skerries are currently safe – they have a ten point lead over Skerries and Corinthians – but they have a tough run with games against Naas and UCC to come.
Cashel should be strong enough at home but Skerries need to get something from this match.
Corinthians (10th) v Malone (5th), Corinthian Park
It would take something really special for Corinthians to avoid relegation or at least a relegation playoff at this stage.
On Saturday they host a Malone side who are just one point outside the promotion playoff positions.
The Ulster side won 20 – 14 early season and should repeat the win on Saturday.
Queens (7th) v Nenagh Ormond (4th), Dub Lane
Nenagh’s win over Banbridge made sure that we will have an interesting run in, not least for the Tipp side who are in playoff territory.
Queens are out of the running but that doesn’t mean they will give up the ghost.
The away side have a real impetus and momentum and won well back in September.
UCC (3rd) v Naas (1st), Mardyke
Simply put this is a must win for both sides. There are only two rounds of games left after this weekend so neither side can afford to slip up in the chase for automatic promotion.
It was a 34 – 27 cracker when these two met in Forenaughts a few months back. It could be a tighter affair this weekend with so much at stake.
Tough to call but Naas to edge it.