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Senior service resumed

FIRST played for in 1892 when Dublin Nomads were the victors, the Leinster FA Senior Cup made a welcome return to the playing calendar after a decade's absence when the draw was held at Abbotstown last week.

The last club to win the competition - Wayside Celtic who overcame Athlone Town in a replay in 1999 - were given a tough route to negotiate if they are to successfully defend the grand old trophy.

First they have to deal with the challenge of fellow Leinster Senior rivals Bluebell United and then overcome current League of Ireland champions Bohemians - both matches away from home

Eight non-league sides were paired in the preliminary round while the only 'all premier' clash is the meeting of St Patrick's Athletic and Drogheda United.

League of Ireland Director Fran Gavin said he had fond memories of the competition and his sole piece of silverware after a 16 year 'pro' career was a LFA Senior Cup win with St Pats.

It was something he treasured and he believed the competition's return was welcome and an ideal opportunity for national league and non-league clubs to challenge for a piece of silveware that was steeped in football history and folklore.