YMCA begin their bid to reach the IHL for the first time on Friday night (8.15pm, Serpentine Avenue) as they battle Lisnagarvey, the side who have excelled in the premier competition but struggled in their domestic Ulster league, precipitating the change of date.
YM go into the three team competition – Bandon get underway on Saturday when the tournament switches to Grange Road – as the side furthest out of regular fixtures, finishing their campaign over a month and a half ago at this point but do have the benefit of no travel concerns, an issue the Munster third place have already taken issue with.
They build their challenge on one of the sternest defences in the country; Iain Walker the last line behind Australian imports Todd Gill and Simon Mills who made the Y the second meanest backline in Leinster.
Timmy Cockram’s drags; Jason Lynch’s trickery and Greg Thompson’s poaching are the main threats on Friday before awaiting what will be needed to qualify on Sunday against Bandon.
The Munster men arrive in Dublin bouyed by their 2009 Charity Cup win – played a year later than originally scheduled – beating C of I B 5-3. The top two from the three team competition qualify for the 2010/11 IHL.
Men’s IHL Wildcard fixtures:
Friday, May 7: YMCA vs Lisnagarvey, 8.15pm, Serpentine Avenue
Saturday, May 8: Lisnagarvey vs Bandon, 2pm, Grange Road
Sunday, May 9: Bandon vs YMCA, 11.15am, Grange Road