The women’s draw for the first round of the Irish Senior Cup threw up two tasty ties as IHL semi-finalists from the past two seasons Railway Union and Loreto along with UCD and Ards set to meet on October 4.They are the marquee ties for the opening round of a competition that UCD claimed last season with a 2-0 final victory over Pembroke. Ards, though, are a tough outfit and showed decent form last weekend to reach the final of the McCausland, Light and Rankin Cup final, only losing to Pegasus on penalties.
In the men’s competition, most of the interesting action will take place up north with Lisnagarvey against Annadale the one scheduled tie between two IHL teams.
Six Leinster sides have been handed byes to the second round including reigning champions Three Rock Rovers and IHL champs Monkstown, giving the Glenageary club a weekend off ahead of their EHL trip to Barcelona.
YMCA versus Pembroke is the game of most local interest while Corinthian meet Robbie Taylor’s Newry who return to the competition following their promotion to the Ulster Premier League. Avoca host Cork C of I.
Women’s Irish Senior Cup, round one (October 4): Pembroke v Randalstown, Catholic Institute v Belfast Harlequins, UCD v Ards, Portadown v Cork Harlequins; Lurgan v North Kildare; Railway Union v Loreto; Glenanne v UCC; Trinity v Ballymoney; Hermes v Queens
Byes to round two (November 15): Greenfields, Old Alex, Ulster Elks, Corinthian, Cork C of I, Pegasus, Lisnagarvey
Men’s Irish Senior Cup, first round (October 4): Banbridge v Kilkeel; Lisnagarvey v Annadale; Avoca v Cork C of I; Cork Harlequins v Instonians; Corinthian v Newry; NICS v Belfast Harlequins; YMCA v Pembroke
Byes to round two (October 18): UCC, UCD, Mossley, TRR, Glenanne, Monkstown, Railway Union, Cookstown, Rathgar