The Irish Senior Cup will move away from the open draw format this season, reverting back to the tiered entry-format which was in vogue around 15 years ago.
The method sees the EY Hockey League sides go straight through to round three in the men’s competition and round two in the women’s competition. Regional top tier sides, meanwhile, have been drawn in preliminary rounds.On the men’s side, there are three round one games with Clontarf facing South Antrim, Railway meeting Queen’s and Kilkeel up against Bangor, possibly the pick of the ties between two of the main Ulster Premier contenders last term.
Corinthian, Bandon, Avoca, Belfast Harlequins, Instonians, UCD, Mossley, Kilkenny and Dublin University all enter in round two. They compete for six places in the last 16.
In round three, there is the potential for a repeat of Pembroke’s thrilling ISC tie against South Antrim should the Ulster side win through two rounds of matches.
Monkstown are confirmed as playing Glenanne while reigning champions Three Rock Rovers face Annadale in two already formalised match-ups which are scheduled for four days before the start of the World Cup.
On the women’s side, the entry list is slightly shorter with four first round games featuring Corinthian v Banbridge, Glenanne against Trinity, Ulster Elks against Genesis while Ballymoney make the long journey to UCC.
Monkstown and Lurgan have received byes to round two. The second phase has three confirmed ties with an Ulster derby between Ards and Cork Harlequins, UCD up against Lurgan and Pembroke meeting Monkstown. Those ties are down for decision on December 1.
Men’s Irish Senior Cup
Round 1 (October 6): Clontarf v South Antrim; Railway Union v Queens University; Kilkeel v Bangor
Round 2 (date to be confirmed): Railway Union/Queens v Corinthian; Kilkeel/Bangor v Bandon; Avoca v Belfast Harlequins; Instonians v UCD; Clontarf/South Antrim v Mossley; Kilkenny v Dublin University
Round 3 (November 24): Pembroke Wanderers v Clontarf/South Antrim/Mossley; Railway Union/Queens/Corinthian v Banbridge; Monkstown v Glenanne; Lisnagarvey v Kilkenny/Dublin University; Avoca/Belfast Harlequins v Cookstown; Three Rock Rovers v Annadale; Cork C of I v Instonians/UCD; Kilkeel/Bangor/Bandon v YMCA
Women’s Irish Senior Cup draw
Round 1 (October 7): Corinthian v Banbridge; Glenanne v Trinity College; UCC v Ballymoney; Ulster Elks v Genesis
Byes: Monkstown, Lurgan
Round 2 (December 1): Ards v Belfast Harlequins; UCD v Lurgan; UCC/Ballymoney v Loreto; Cork Harlequins v Corinthian/Banbridge; Railway Union v Ulster Elks/Genesis; Pembroke Wanderers v Monkstown; Pegasus v Glenanne/Trinity College