Limerick sides looking to continue good form this weekend in All Ireland League

Young Munster and UL Bohemians still chasing first wins as Limerick sides gained valuable points last weekend.

Garryowen, Shannon, Old Crescent, Bruff and Thomond all got their seasons truly up and running last weekend with important round two victories setting them up nicely going into a third weekend straight of AIL action.

Young Munster V Buccaneer (Dubarry Park, Kick Off 2:30)

Munsters’ had a tough away trip last weekend when they made the journey to the capital to meet a strong Lansdowne outfit. Going into the game, the Cookies had lost their opening round game with UCD at Tom Clifford park and many saw the Lansdowne game as an extremely tough one for them to win, and they were right. Georoid Prendergast’s men were defeated 25-5 at the Aviva meaning the Tom Clifford park outfit were 0 from 2 already and looking a lot less well off compared to their start last year.

However, Munsters’ have a big chance to rectify those two early defeats as they make the trip to Athlone to take on new boys Buccaneers. It will be a very tough ask of the Limerick side seeing as Buccs’ are in the exact same position having lost their two opening rounds of fixtures as well and will be extremely eager to get their first win of the campaign. With talks of Irish International Keith Earls returning for the Limerick side, to get some much needed game time under his belt for, on paper Young Munster should be hopeful coming home with the four points.

Garryowen V Clontarf (Dooradoyle Kick Off 2:30)

Garryowen got their season officially up and running against Buccaneers last time out at Dooradoyle coming away with a bonus point, 29-17 win over Buccaneers. It wasn’t perfect for the light blues however and took them 70 minutes before really coming out on top after a Buccaneers yellow card, where Conan Doyle’s side went on to score two unanswered tries.

Next up is the unenviable task of last year’s finalists and 2016 champions Clontarf. The Dublin side had great success in this fixture last season winning both clashes comfortably and whilst tomorrows tie will be a lot closer it will be a huge ask for Garryowen to come away with four points. It will tell a lot about the Dooradoyle’s side ambition this year if they can manage a victory but with Tarfs’ experience and the fact they too are fresh from a bonus point victory last weekend it will be a surprise if Garryowen manage a win.

Old Wesley V Shannon (Donnybrook Kick Off 2:30)

The surprise package this season, and one of only two side’s from Limerick to have a 100% so far is Shannon. The Coonagh outfit had a miserable enough start to the season last year winning only two fixtures until Christmas when then coach Marcus Horan was sacked. It’s a whole different story this year with impressive wins against U.C.C and Old Belvedere getting their season off to a perfect start.

Next up is Old Wesley on the artificial pitch at Donnybrook on Saturday and Tom Hayes’ side should be looking for three from three here. Old wesley haven’t recorded a win yet this season and lay second from bottom after two rounds and although no match is less or more difficult than the next in the AIL, if Shannon do have hopes of retuning to division 1A it’s games like these they should be winning.

UL Bohemians V Ballymena (UL 4G Pitch Kick Off 2:30)

UL Bohs have had a poor start to their campaign after going down to Banbridge and Naas in round 1 and round 2 respectively. After such a promising season last year, where they were just one win away from returning to Division 1A, Christy Neilan’s men will be kicking themselves not having put four points on the board yet.

Next up, and a chance to put some early season wrongs right, is Ballymena. The Northerners have one win under their belt against Old Wesley but lost last weekend at the hands of Dolphin so they too will be looking to bounce right back which makes it an even bigger ask of the robins. With home advantage, Bohs’ should be looking to win this tie if they have any hopes of repeating last years success and getting their season back on track

Dungannon V Old Crescent (Stevenson Park Kick Off 2:30)

Old Crescent are the only other Limerick side to have a 100% record going into round three after wins against Rainey Old Boys and MU Barhall last Saturday. Crescent’s win over Barnhall last weekend was made that bit more special seeing as 10 of the starting team played their rugby with the club at underage level as well.

Next up is Dungannon who sit two places behind Crescent in fourth. The Rosbrien side will be looking for similar results to that of last years campaign against the County Tyrone side having beaten them home and away. Eugene McGovern’s side will be looking to keep their excellent form going as they travel north and with the confidence from their opening games should be hopeful of a win in Tyrone.

Thomond V Seapoint (Liam Fitzgerald Park Kick Off 2:30)

Thomond beat Tullamore last weekend to record their first four points on the road in an amazing 910 days. Having only lost their first game by a last minutes missed conversion and winning last weekend 27-20, the Thomondgate side look to have put their last 2 abysmal season’s to bed,

Tomorrow they play host to Seapoint who lie in 8th place after one win from two games, similar to James’ Hickey’s side, but the latter will be hoping for 2 wins in as many weeks after that huge confidence boost against Tullamore last time out.

Bruff V Midleton (Kilballyowen Park Kick Off 2:30)

Bruff came away with an impressive 33-21 victory against Bective Rangers last Saturday evening at Donnybrook which was the county Limerick side’s first victory of the 2017/18 season. The Killyballyowen outfit lie in fourth place with their opponents tomorrow, Sligo, top of the pile.

Bruff will be looking for home advantage to pay off tomorrow afternoon where a win would help them leapfrog the Connacht side by a point. However, after good wins against Thomond away and Malahide at home last time out, Sligo RFC will pose a huge challenge for Eoin Cahill’s charges.

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