Northern Bank Ulster Schools’ Preview Saturday 6th November 2010

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With all schools re opened after the half term break, there is a full list of games scheduled to take place on Saturday 6th November.
Royal School, Dungannon will hope that their injury list will have been sorted out during the half term break as they prepare to host a young but confident Rainey Endowed School team. The Dungannon team will rely heavily on the pace and power of Peter Nelson as well as the skills of Gary Wong and Frankie Yeun. Jake Finlay, Andrew Clingan and John Condy have all played well for the Co Tyrone team in recent games and similar performances could see them safely through against the developing Rainey Endowed team.
The Magherafelt team can call upon the experience of players such as Luke Steele, Martin Connolly and Damian McMurray for this game They will also have the youthful exuberance of Jonathan Lees, Michael Dawson and Matthew Stewart to call upon as they travel to Dungannon in a bid to build on their recent successful outings.
The Antrim Grammar School team has struggled to display any real level of consistency in their games so far this season. The have a number of very talented players in their ranks including Supreet Jayaprakash, Callum McCrenaghan and Aidan Howe and Jack Dempster. These players, on their day, can be a match for most teams in the Province. They will hope for good performances in an effort to overcome their visitors on Saturday, Belfast High School.
The Belfast High School team has also struggled for consistency in the early stages of the current season. In their last outing they made the Friends’ School team work hard for a 10-0 victory. Jake Toan, Ryan McGonigle and their Belfast High School team mates will target their trip to Antrim as an opportunity to get their season back onto the rails again. They will be hopeful of returning back to their Shore Road base with a rare victory under their belts!
Royal School, Armagh recorded an excellent win last weekend against the Royal Belfast Academical Institution team. The Armagh captain, Neil Faloon, was the outstanding performer in that game. He was ably supported by Stuart Hooks, Harry Boyd, Peter Eves and Timothy McNeice. The RS Armagh team hope to have Robbie Magowan back from holiday and available for selection for the visit of Sullivan Upper.
The Sullivan team had been recording some impressive results until they met a very determined Grosvenor Grammar School team just prior to the half term break. The Holywood boys were outmuscled by the Grosvenor team and will have to work hard if they are to take anything out of their visit to play the confident RS Armagh team. Oliver Loughead, Jamie Halliday, Ross Adair and Ryan Loughead will be hoping that their team mates can put their poor performance in their last outing behind them as they attempt to get back to winning ways in Armagh.
Regent House had a morale boosting 52-9 victory against a shell shocked Limavady Grammar School team during the half term break. The Newtownards team was 16-6 ahead at half time with Stephen Colwell and Nathan Burns accounting for most of their points. In a one sided second half performance, it was these players who set the pace of the game enabling their team to score 36 points and win the game comfortably. The Regent team travels to play Cambridge House on Saturday and will be confident of producing a similar result.
However, they should be aware that the Cambridge House team is a very workmanlike outfit with some quality players in key positions. Matthew Harkness, Timmy Small, Jordan Simpson, Jonny Robinson and Kieran Bowes are all playing well at the moment. Nothing would give them more pleasure than to record a win on Saturday against their illustrious visitors from Regent House.
Omagh Academy host Lurgan College and will be confident of recording a rare victory if they can perform to the best of their ability. The Omagh team has run a number of teams close in the course of the season without coming away with the results their performances may deserve. Ashley McIlwaine, Harry Gibson and Lee Warnock are key performers for the Omagh Academy team. The Lurgan team will need to keep a close eye on them.
The Lurgan College team have recorded a number of wins already this season. They have key players in Josh McKay and Nicky Moore. Greg Lyness has, this season, been their leading try scorer and will hope to get his name on the scoreboard on Saturday. If he can manage to do so early in the game, it could make for an interesting encounter.
Methodist College received a welcome boost with their victory against Rockwell College in Cashel over the half term break. Matthew McFaul was the star performer with a faultless kicking display. James Harrison, Mark Gribben, Ryan Martin, Dan Kerr and Rory Winters gave good account of themselves, as well, against the Rockwell team. The Methody team will host one of the biggest schools in Leinster, Belvedere College, on Saturday in what should be yet another challenging encounter.
The Belvedere team is coached by ex-Ireland International forward, Gabriel Fulcher, himself a former Rockwell College player. The Methody team will need to keep a close eye on Belvedere College players such as John Conroy and David Shanahan who were members of the all-conquering Leinster Schools’ U18 squad in the recent Schools’ U18’s Inter Provincial series.
Limavady Grammar School will hope to put a disappointing series of recent results behind them when they host a Larne Grammar School team just returned from a successful half term tour to British Columbia. The Limavady team was soundly defeated by Regent House inn their last game. Nathan Barr will be demanding an improved performance from his team on Saturday. Ryan McCool, Conor Crampsie, Shay McIntosh combining with Nathan Barr bring a great deal of experience to the Limavady Grammar School team. The will need to use all of their experience if they are to record a win on Saturday.
Billy Brown, Aaron McBride, Houston Saunderson, Ross Williamson and Nathan McCullough all developed as key players whilst on the Larne Grammar School tour in British Columbia. If they can replicate some of their good tour displays against the Limavady Grammar School team on Saturday, there could be an unexpected result at the end of the game!
Foyle and Londonderry College will hope to have a full squad from which to select as they welcome Royal Belfast Academical Institution to Springtown on Saturday. Tom Burns, Neil Burns, Ian Vance, Chris Campbell and Graeme McCarter are all key players for the Foyle team. They will need to be at their best when they welcome the Belfast Inst team to the Maiden City.
The Belfast Inst team was on the wrong end of a narrow result against the RS Armagh last weekend. They will be hoping for a different result on Saturday. Having defeated Methodist College in a recent game is an indication of the talent available to this Belfast Inst team. Michael Kilpatrick, Zach Welshman, Kevin McLean, Nathan Dougan and Ben Alexander will be hoping that they can play well enough to ensure their team gets back to winning ways.
Ballymena Academy will host a very strong St Michael’s College team from Dublin on Saturday. The Ballymena team will be hoping to reverse the result of the corresponding fixture, played in very difficult conditions in Dublin, last season. Caleb Morrison, Tim Patton, SamMcNabney, Peter Wallace and Callum Patterson all played in that fixture. It will be a matter of pride to them that history does not repeat itseltf.
The St Michael’s team likes to move the ball around at every opportunity. They are geared to using the pace in their exciting backline and in Mark Corballis and Luke McGrath have two Leinster Schools’ representative players who have been tested at the highest level in schools’ rugby. This should be a very exciting game!
Carrickfergus Grammar School will host a very confident Banbridge Academy team at the North Road venue. The Carrickfergus Grammar School team will be looking for big performances from players such as Andrew Fulton, Jonny Moore and Stuart Davies if they are to get anything from this game.
The Banbridge team has had a mixed season in terms of results so far this season. Chis Craig, Tom Jess, Michael Runciman and Jordan Buchanan are proven performers for the Co Down team. They will expect to come away from Carrickfergus with a victory on Saturday.
Campbell College will host a Dalriada team that recorded a famous Northern Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup win at the same venue last season. The Campbell College team will hope to have Charles Gallagher back in action after injury ruled him out of recent games. The Campbell College team has a great deal of experience to call upon with Chris Farrell, John Creighton, Glen Bailie, Rory Scholes and Chris Best forming a formidable back line.
The Dalriada team will hope that David Campbell, Roger Bonnar, Jonny McLaughlin and Ben Henderson can replicate the performances that served them so well on their last visit to Campbell College. If they can, it could be an interesting game to watch.
Wellington College will host a Friends’ School “Select” xv. The Wellington team will be confident of a win in this game and with players such as Gareth McCaughey, Adam Webb and Alistair Lavery to call upon their confidence could be justified.
The young Friends’ team will look for big performances from players such as Ben Brackenridge, Matthew Patterson,Stuart Campbell and Ryan Armstrong to see them through this game against the experienced Wellington College team.
Bangor Grammar School will host a very powerful Belfast Royal Academy team at the Ballymacormick Road venue on Saturday. The Bangor team started the current season in a confident manner and will hope for big performances from their experienced cluster of players, including Stuart McCloskey, Craig Harper and Karl Lamont.
The Belfast Royal Academy team has looked impressive in recent games with Ryan Clarke, Stuart Olding, Eoin Devlin, Matthew Robinson and Mark Wylie scoring regularly for the BRA team. They will expect to score more points against the Bangor Grammar School team.
Down High School should be at full strength when they travel to play Friends’ School on Saturday. Matthew McKeown, Stuart Orr, John Donnan, Aaron Cairns and Justin Rea are all talented players that the Friends’ team will need to monitor closely throughout the game. The Down High School team will see themselves as favourites to win this game.
The Friends’ team was without a number of key players in their last outing at Belfast High School. If Michael Cochrane and Dean Howes are available for selection for the Lisburn team they should approach this game in a confident frame of mind.
Ballyclare High School will hope to maintain their unbeaten start to the season when they host Grosvenor Grammar School on Saturday. The Ballyclare team has power and pace in all positions and will want to play their expansive style of play against a very committed Grosvenor Grammar School team. Jonny Holmes and Jack Irvine form a very effective half back partnership and their performances have been key to the Ballyclare success so far this season.
However, they would be foolish to underestimate a Grosvenor team that, despite a slow start to the season, has made a few pundits sit up and take notice with their recent performances. Mark Foster, Scott Ervine and Peter Davidson will hope to encourage their team mates to perform as well as they did against Sullivan if they are to come away from the Rashee Road with anything in terms of a positive result.
Portadown College will look to their abrasive back row if they are to halt the Wallace High School juggernaut at the Killicomaine Road venue. David and Michael Busby as well as Thomas Halliday are important players for the Co Armagh team. They will need to be at their best on Saturday against the Wallace team.
Chris Taylor, Daniel Henry, Cal McIlwaine and Jordan Grattan are all quality players for the Wallace team.They will see themselves as favourites to win this game. If they can win enough quality ball, their optimism would seem to be justified!
Supporters will be made welcome at all these games which are scheduled to kick off at 10-30am. However, checks should be made with the schools regarding the kick off times.

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