The draw has been made for the first round of the Energia Women’s All-Ireland Cup for 2019/2020. The field increases from 13 to 15 teams for this season’s competition, with champions UL Bohemian receiving a bye into the quarter-finals.
The first round kicks off on October 5th – one week before the official start of the Energia Women’s All-Ireland League.
For Suttonians and Malone, the Cup forms part of final preparations for their debut season in the top tier of club rugby.
Tullow’s run to the semi-finals of last year’s competition was only ended by the eventual winners. The Carlow women are at home Energia All-Ireland League Champions Railway Union in their Cup opener this time around.
Suttonians also reached the last four last time out. They host 2019 Shield Finalists Tralee. Cooke face a difficult trip to Connacht Women’s League and Cup champions Westport.
In total, seven of the 15 clubs play their rugby outside the Energia Women’s All-Ireland League with five of them enjoying home advantage in the first round.
Ballynahinch host Blackrock College, City of Derry are at home to Old Belvedere with Shannon welcoming Malone to Coonagh.
Tullamore will need a win on the road at Galwegians if they are to advance to the quarter-finals.
As in previous years, there will be Plate and Shield Competitions for teams who fail to advance in the Cup.
Take a look back at last season’s final as UL Bohs were crowned cup champions last season as Ben Martin’s well-drilled team claimed a record sixth title with a 17-5 final win over Blackrock at Ashbourne RFC
ENERGIA WOMEN’S ALL-IRELAND CUP – ROUND ONE
Games To Take Place October 5th, 2019, kick-off 5pm
UL Bohemian v BYE
Westport v Cooke
Shannon v Malone
Galwegians v Tullamore
Suttonians v Tralee
City Of Derry v Old Belvedere
Tullow v Railway Union
Ballynahinch v Blackrock