For the most part, the top half plays the bottom as Leinster division one returns for the second half of the season since breaking for Christmas on December 10 – the exception between Railway and Monkstown could be a corker
Strength in depth is the by-word on a crucial day in the Leinster women’s division one title shake-up as Railway Union host UCD with both sides shy some of their top performers.
Three Rock Rovers’ bid for a fourth Tony Byrne indoor title in five years will be put to a serious test on Saturday in the playoff group phase; both men’s and women’s competitions will be decided on Sunday in the NBA in Tallaght
Alan Sothern’s quartet of goals saw Pembroke overhaul Glenanne while Railway Union kept YMCA at bay to take the final two Leinster places in the men’s National Indoor Trophy finals; Railway, Glenanne, Old Alex and Hermes progressed in the women’s competition
Phelie Maguire’s indoor debut yielded five goals for Three Rock and helped confirm their place at the National Indoor Trophy finals weekend along with Clontarf following day three of the Leinster men’s groups at Loughlinstown.
The National Indoor Trophy hots up this weekend as the six men’s finalists and five more women’s teams will be confirmed to join the Ulster Elks and Ards.
Clontarf took the most affirmative step forward in the men’s National Indoor Trophy as their pair of single-goal victories put them within a point in their final group two game to confirm their place in the finals weekend.
Three Rock Rovers begin the defence of their National Indoor Trophy title with much the same panel at their disposal that annexed the crown last time around despite a series of emigrations.
Monkstown put themselves in great shape as they line up a push for a first title since 1982 in the New Year, beating Glenanne 4-2. Pembroke, Railway and Fingal also won while division two hots up, too
Monkstown will head men’s division one for the lengthy Christmas break but they can determine by how much on Saturday as the top four showdown in a high quality close to the first half of the season.
A critical weekend in the men’s division one title race, Pembroke fell to their first defeat of the campaign, allowing Monkstown to become the first clear leaders this season, going top for the first time since 1983
YMCA and Glenanne’s top of the table clash has been scuppered by a mixture of unavailable pitches and umpires to rob this weekend of the most eye-catching men’s Leinster division one games.
Pembroke gave up a 3-0 lead against Railway Union to draw, allowing YMCA, Glenanne and Monkstown to all close the gap in the title chase. TRR snatched a last gasp win at Clontarf while only the Chiefs remain in the IHT
Just five days since making a senior breakthrough of sorts, UCD go back into the lion’s den to face a Glenanne side chastened perhaps by their Neville Cup semi-final exit.
Hermes have an almost instant chance of revenge against UCD in the refixed Irish Hockey League clash, aiming to slow the rising juggernaut which has laid waste to virtually every challenge in their path to date.
Having ousted Trinity in emphatic fashion, Queen’s University will aim to shoot down a large contingent of DUHC old boys in the second round of the men’s Irish Hockey Trophy as they were drawn to face Rathgar.
After Saturday’s mauling at the hands of UCD, Clontarf showed a much more rigid defensive turn against Fingal to record their first ever clean sheet in division one after four seasons of trying in the top tier
UCD broke their seasonal duck in emphatic fashion as Shane O’Donoghue brought his tally to 11 goals since making the switch in the summer.
The third round of the Irish Hockey League often sees the split between contender and also-rans with back-to-back ties hastening the process. A busy weekend, Division one and two, the Neville Cup and Irish Trophy are also in action
Pembroke moved to the top of men’s Leinster Division One as they clicked into gear in the second half against Clontarf; Glenanne were given a fright by TRR while Corinthian, Monkstown and Railway recorded strong wins