Review Ulster Rugby Senior League Sat 12th September 2013 – Round 5 – PREVIEW. By George Millar

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Review Ulster Rugby Senior League Sat 12th September
Round Five this weekend will see eight points seaparating the top five sides with Rainey on 18pts, Ballymena 16pts, B’Hinch 15pts, City of Derry 12 pts, QUB 10 pts. Both City of Derry and QUB have played one game less.

Armagh v Ballymena.

A trip to the Palace grounds will provide spectators with the ‘match of the day’ as both teams recorded excellent wins in their opening two fixtures in the All Ireland League. Armagh sit second from bottom in the Ulster Senior league after having points deducted for not fulfilling their fixture at City of Derry. Captain Richard Reaney will want his Orchard county team to record a win to take into the All Ireland league when it recommences on the 26th October. Ballymena continue to entertain with their free scoring side contributing to their very encouraging start to the season. The Ulster Senior league offers the opportunity for Bryan Young and his team to bring further silverware in the form of the Stevenson Shield back to Eaton Park. Ballymena to win.

Ballynahinch v Ards

For Derek Sufferin and his side a win is essential to restore confidence after their opening two defeats in All Ireland League 1A. Such is the strength in depth at Ballymacarn the coaches may use this fixture to look at some of the fringe players with the Hinch seconds also playing Limavady in a Junior Cup tie at home. Ards have become the ‘forty minute team’ this season as again illustrated in last Saturdays fixture at Middleton. They were 9 – 3 down at HT and ended up losing 35 – 3. Stewart Porter and his coaching team will be looking to reverse this trend after encouraging performances against Rainey, Dungannon and Queens. Ballynahinch to win.

City of Derry v Dungannon

Judges Road will provide a stiff test for Paddy Johns and his Dungannon team as a buoyant North West team will want to continue their winning habit. Mark Nicholl is building a squad that will be contenders for promotion from Division 2A of the All Ireland League. Dungannon will be missing their Ulster contingent who have been instrumental in their encouraging start to their All Ireland league ambitions. City of Derry to win

Malone v Instonians

Coach Jacque Benade will want to give his fringe players game time as his team prepare for a crucial Senior Cup game at Ballynahinch the following week. With the unavailability of their Ulster squad players who were influential in their strong start to their All Ireland league campaign these squad players made a significant input in their second half rally at Buccaneers. Instonians bounced back from a heavy defeat at Skerries to record a narrow home win 14 – 13 over Navan last Saturday. With Instonians seconds playing their Junior cup tie against Coleraine on Friday night – William Leacock will bring a strong squad to Gibson Park with the ambition of causing an upset. Malone to win.

Queens v Belfast Harlequins

This local derby at the Dub won’t ease the pain for Quins coach Adam Larkin as his side take on a dominant Queens xv. Again the influence of the Quins Ulster contingent will be missed despite a disappointing start to their All Ireland campaign that has only yielded one point. Such is the considerable strength in depth at Queens Robbie Moore and his coaching team may rest some of their players with Ards to play next week in the Senior Cup. Queens have ambitions to win the Stevenson Shield. Queens to win

Rainey v Banbridge

Again Hatrick Park will be another daunting challenge for Daniel Soper and his Bann team. The Magherfelt squad showed their resolve to bounce back from an opening day defeat at City of Derry in the All Ireland league to record an emphatic 45 – 33 win at home to Seapoint. Rainey sit comfortably at the head of the Ulster Senior league and will not want to slip up in their quest to bring the Stevenson Shield back to Mid Ulster. The Bann team have disappointed in their opening two defeats in the All Ireland league. Rainey to win.

Review Ulster Rugby Senior League Sat 12th September

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