Thursday 18 October 2018

Garryowen's final ambitions

Garrowen A clash with Lansdowne in the final four at Aviva Stadium tomorrow. (stock image)
Garrowen A clash with Lansdowne in the final four at Aviva Stadium tomorrow. (stock image)

Daragh Small

Garryowen will look to reach their first Ulster Bank League Division 1A final in five years when they clash with Lansdowne in the final four at Aviva Stadium tomorrow.

It's a massive day for the Limerick outfit who last claimed the title in 2007 and were playing their rugby in Division 1B as recently as 2014-15.

They only finished second to Galwegians that year but since then they have finished fifth and ninth, before a brilliant campaign this term has them nearing the top of the club game again.

A big 48-21 bonus-point win over St Mary's College on April 14 meant Garryowen only advanced to the play-offs with one point to spare over fifth-placed Clontarf.

They are joined in the semi-finals by reigning champions Cork Con, who clash with Terenure at Lakelands.

Cork Con finished third in the standings but five points behind their opponents on Saturday.

Last weekend Cork Con missed out on their bid for a sixth Bateman Cup title in a row. It was a 32-12 win for Lansdowne at Temple Hill, with Liam O'Connell and Darren O'Shea scoring for the hosts.

UCC could be playing in the top tier next season as they prepare for a promotion play-off against Banbridge at Rifle Park.

UCC were 36-24 winners at St Mary's College last weekend, while Banbridge got the better of Ballynahinch. The Cork side finished fourth in the table at the end of the 1B season and Banbridge were nine points better off.

Nenagh Ormond will aim for a 1B berth next season this weekend when they play City of Armagh at Palace Grounds. Nenagh finished fourth after the season proper, level on points with Armagh, and will fancy their chances.

Irish Independent

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