Ulster Bank League Round 5 preview

Limerick clubs face into round 5 of UBL action this weekend with some big games in prospect.

It was a good weekend for nearly every Limerick side last time out, with UL Bohemians the only side to suffer a defeat, at the hands of another local side Shannon, who are looking excellent in division 1B.

Young Munster V St. Mary’s (Tom Clifford Park, Kick-Off 2:30pm)

Last weekend, Young Munster pulled off one of the results of the season, with an extremely hard fought 19-20 victory over Munster rivals Cork Constitution in Temple Hill. Shane Airey was the hero on Saturday as he struck for a match winning penalty with the last kick of the game to give the Cookies only their second win of the campaign, after a run of some poor results in recent weeks.

This Saturday, Tom Clifford park is the venue for a visiting St. Mary’s side who sit just underneath their Limerick opponents on eight points with Munsters’ on 10. Both sides have won two out of their first five games so far this year and will be looking to improve their standings on Saturday afternoon as they lie a number of places off the top and play off spots. The home side will take huge confidence from their round five win in Cork suggesting it will be tough for the Dublin side to come away with any points.

Lansdowne V Garryowen (Aviva Stadium, Kick-Off 2:30pm)

It promises to be a huge game at the Aviva as leaders Lansdowne will play host to Garryowen on Saturday afternoon in the Aviva stadium with the home side sitting on top of 1A with 22 points and the away side in third on 16. Mike Ruddock’s men haven’t put a foot wrong so far this campaign with five wins out of five, with two try bonus points on their way.

Conan Doyle’s side have also put in some really good performance’s this year with big wins against Clontarf, and last weekend against a UCD side littered with Leinster academy players. They travel to the capital Saturday to try and really put their name in the hat for this year’s All Ireland League title, with a win against the table toppers really signalling their intent. However it will be a huge ask of the Dooradoyle side seeing as Lansdowne have already beaten last year’s winners, Cork Con, as well as defeating St.Mary’s 33-7, a side who Garryowen lost too.

Shannon V Banbridge (Thomond Park, Kick-Off 2:30pm)

In Division 1B, high flying Shannon will play their second game in Thomond Park in as many weeks as Banbridge make the trip down south in another top of the table clash involving a local side. The home side made it five wins from five at the weekend when they defeated local rivals UL Bohs’ 27-22 and will be looking to really make a statement this Saturday when they face their nearest opponents in the table.

Posted by Shannon R.F.C. on Thursday, November 2, 2017

Tom Hayes’ men weren’t expected to amount to much this season, after a poor showing last year, following a dreadful start to their campaign, but have surprised many this season with not a single point dropped, and will be looking to really showcase their credentials as Division 1B champions come May with a win against Banbridge and if they carry on with their recent form, they would have to be favourites on Saturday.

Old Belvedere V UL Bohemians (Anglesa Road, Kick-Off 2:30pm)

Its another week where UL Bohemians will be training after a disappointing loss in the league following on from their narrow defeat to Shannon last Friday night which now roots them to third last in the table on 7 points from their opening five fixtures. They now have to make the trip to Dublin to face an Old Belvedere side who are doing relatively well since being relegated from Division 1A last year.

FIXTURES FOR THE WEEKENDING 5th NovemberSenior XV AIL Vs Old Belvedere RFC in Angelsea Road on Saturday 04/11/2017 @…

Posted by UL Bohemian RFC, Thomond Park, Limerick on Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Christy Neilan’s side could struggle on Saturday if their league form is anything to go by with just one victory so far, with their opponents winning three out of their five fixtures, and only last weekend defeated an admittedly already struggling Dolphin side 38-10, however a win away from home against a good Belvedere side might help rejuvenate Bohs who need to start picking up points.

Old Crescent V Skerries (Rosbrien, Kick-Off 2:30pm)

Old Crescent, along with Shannon, have been the stand out performers from Limerick this year across the Ulster Bank League divisions with a 100% record and some really important victories along the way already. This week, they face Skerries, in another crucial top of the table clash, after narrowly defeating Wanderers in round four 20-19 to move top of 2B.

This Saturday they will play host to a Skerries side who have been in a rich vein of form themselves, winning four out of their opening five, but also amounting four try bonus points along the way. It’s no doubt that Saturday’s encounter will be a high scoring affair with the home side amassing 54 points last weekend and their opponents scoring 22 and 28 points in their last two fixtures. If the Rosbrien hopeful can come away with a victory, it would be a real signal of their ambitions this season.

Bangor V Bruff (Upritchard Park, Kick-Off 2:30pm)

Bruff have been motoring along nicely in Division 2B this season with three good wins and two try bonus points already under their belt placing them second in the division on 17 points under leader Sligo who are on 20. The trip up north will be a tough ask of the County Limerick side, with their opponents Bangor winning three matches this season too, two of which were home ties.

The home side have already disposed of Limerick opposition when they defeated Thomond 36-14 in round four so they shouldn’t be too worried going into the top 5 fixture. However, Owen Cahill’s men haven’t been defeated since their opening round loss to Omagh at Kilballyowen park, with a draw and three wins in those games. A win for Bruff here would be a huge confidence boost, seeing as Bangor haven’t been beaten at Upritchard Park yet this season. However, the form of the county side so far this season suggests that the are well capable of getting a precious win up north.

Thomond V Malahide (Liam Fitzgerald Park, Kick-Off 2:30pm)

Thomond welcome Malahide to Liam Fitzgerald park tomorrow afternoon for what is sure to be a crucial game in both sides hope for promotion and a top four finish this season. James Hickey’s charges currently lie one place above their opponents in the table with just one point separating second and third.

Thomond will take a lot of confidence from the fact this Malahide side, who have Mike Ross in their ranks as a player coach, haven’t won a game yet this year away from home and have earned all their points at home this season. Thomond had an impressive 23-28 away win last time out, all with a player sent off for an hour of the game, suggesting that this side’s resolve is definitely strong when it needs to be.


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