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Wanderers have a big 'Bridge to cross

THE Leinster League resumes this weekend after its mid-season hiatus with action in Division 1A tomorrow while combatants in the remaining divisions return to the fray on Sunday.

Unbeaten Division 1A leaders Wanderers travel to Newbridge and they can certainly expect a much harder battle than the 45-0 stroll to victory they enjoyed when the sides met at Lansdowne Road last October.

The Co Kildare side have won three league games on the bounce and will be a tough nut to crack on their home patch in Rosetown.



Second-placed Dundalk are on the other side of the Curragh to take on fifth-placed but also relegation threatened Cill Dara in Beechpark.

The remaining two games are all about the relegation battle with bottom side Tullow having to travel to Ashbrook to play Coolmine, the team one point and two places above them.

The Dubliners won 30-13 when the teams met at the Co Carlow venue earlier in the campaign but have failed to subsequently kick on while the visitors are finding Saturday rugby a severe hindrance with player availability being a major problem for a club that has played for the previous 40 years on Sundays.

It's a battle of the area champions in the final game as South East J1 winners Enniscorthy, who beat Kilkenny 19-13 on Saturday in Oak Park, host Clondalkin, 12-3 Hosie Cup victors against Newbridge the following day at home in Gordon Park.

Worryingly for fourth-placed Clondalkin is their slide into the relegation zone having lost their last four league games after making a bright start to their debut season in Division 1A and unless they win tomorrow they'll really be in the mire.

Ashbourne have opened a seven-point lead at the top of Division 1B but that is as a result of having played a game more, their fixture away to relegation-bound Garda was brought forward and played before Christmas with the Co Meath side getting maximum points in a 30-0 victory.

The leaders host Wicklow at Milltown House on Sunday while second-placed Monkstown will want to keep in touch when they welcome Portarlington to Sydney Parade.



In Division 2A Gorey opened a nine-point lead at the top when they beat Mullingar 14-13 away at Cullion before Christmas in a game brought forward from this Sunday. Second-placed Co Carlow will be expected to close that gap to four points when they travel to Ballinagappa Road to play tailed-off Clane while whoever loses the North Kildare v Railway Union clash at the Maws will be to all intents and purposes eliminated from the promotion race.

In Division 2B third-placed Edenderry travel to leaders New Ross while second-placed Birr will hope to benefit from any mishaps above them when they make the long journey to Wexford Wanderers.

Division 3 pacesetters Swords are idle on Sunday giving the winners of second-placed Midland Warriors against third-placed Guinness in Moate the opportunity to ascend to the top.