Saturday 23 September 2017

Weather delays big finale

Just as the end of the Leinster League came into view, along came a deluge that forced a number of postponements over the weekend and messed up the grand finale. Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto
Just as the end of the Leinster League came into view, along came a deluge that forced a number of postponements over the weekend and messed up the grand finale. Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Dermot O’Mahony

Just as the end of the Leinster League came into view, along came a deluge that forced a number of postponements over the weekend and messed up the grand finale.

The biggest casualty was in Division 1A where Sydney Parade was unplayable for second-placed Enniscorthy's visit to Monkstown, a game that has ramifications at both ends of the table. The fixture has been refixed for tomorrow.

The remaining three games were played but to ensure all games in the final round of matches are played at the same time, tomorrow's planned last series of fixtures have been pushed back to Sunday week.

There were also problems in Division 2A, with three of the four games called off, and similarly these games will now be played on Sunday with the final series of matches being contested a week later.

Two matches in Division 3 that went by the boards have been refixed for Sunday week as they have no material effect on the outcome of the league.

On the pitch Malahide showed no ill effects of a long lay-off as they ran in eight tries in swatting aside in-form Gorey 53-12 at home to open up a nine-point gap over Enniscorthy at the top of Division 1A.

Realistic

The result means that the Wexford club must achieve a bonus point win against Monkstown if they are to entertain realistic hopes of a final day shoot out against the league leaders at home on Sunday week.

Monkstown's lead over bottom club Kilkenny evaporated when the Noresiders drew 24-24 away at Ashbourne. The hosts denied their visitors the maximum haul of points with a last-play-of-the-game try.

De La Salle Palmerston scored all their points in the first half as they beat Dundalk 18-14 and secured 3rd place, securing a spot in next season's All-Ireland Junior Cup.

Division 1B was unaffected by the weather and while Wicklow were being presented with the Ray Campion trophy as league winners after their 28-19 over Coolmine, Tullow moved a step closer to securing second place as they beat North Kildare 22-10 at home.

Mullingar had a huge result as they moved out of the basement and swapped places with Suttonians after beating the Dubliners 35-15 at home.

On Sunday in the final series of Division 1B fixtures Tullow will be trying to lock up a promotion play-off spot at Suttonians.

And Mullingar will be hoping to continue climbing the ladder when they travel to Clondalkin who in turn will be looking for victory as they would then benefit from any Tullow slip up.

Irish Independent

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