Banbridge Bears and the Pegasus Flyers claimed the first trophies of the Irish hockey club season in Havelock Park on Sunday as they won the Anderson Cup and McCausland, Light and Rankin Cup, respectively.
It was part of the Ulster Hockey Association’s Festival of Hockey to kick-start the domestic season, revamping the competitions in a new nine-a-side format played over three days.
Bann saw off Lisnagarvey 4-2 in their final with Irish internationals Phillip Brown and Bruce McCandless on the score sheet alongside new recruits Neil Gilmore and Jamie Wright. The Co Down club had seen off Kilkeel, Newry and Queen’s in the preliminary phases and Cookstown in the semi-finals en route to the final.
It is a strong statement of intent from Bann – Irish Hockey League runners-up last season – who have bolstered their panel significantly this term with Irish centre-midfielder Peter Brown returning to the club after a year with UCD.
Pegasus won the inaugural women’s McCausland, Light and Rankin Cup with a penalties win over Ards, prevailing 2-1 after normal time had ended scoreless.
Anderson Cup final: Banbridge 4 (N Gilmore, J Wright, P Brown, B McCandless) Lisnagarvey 2 (S Murray, D Nelson)
McCausland, Light and Rankin Cup final: Pegasus 0 Ards 0, Pegasus win 2-1 on penalties