23rd April 2009 By Munster Rugby
The semi finals of the A.I.B. All Ireland League are down for decision this weekend and Munster teams are involved in all three divisions.
The First Division semi finals are a repeat of last season’s games when Garryowen and Cork Constitution qualified for the final.
The tie of the round sees Limerick rivals Shannon and Garryowen go head to head in their Division 1 semi final at Coonagh. In this local derby the home side who also hold the record for the most A.I.L. wins with eight titles to their credit will be seeking to bridge a three year gap and claim title number nine, while the Light Blues will be aiming for their fourth A.I.L. crown and end a two-year wait. This is also the first meeting of the sides since they played out a 17-17 draw at Thomond Park Stadium last October.
Defending champions Cork Constitution entertain Clontarf in the other semi final at Temple Hill and the home side will be aiming to record two A.I.L. wins over ‘Tarf as they accounted for the same opposition on a 17-3 scoreline in early March as they seek to retain the title for the first time in their history and add to the O.D.M. sponsored Munster Senior Cup, which they won against Old Crescent at Tom Clifford Park in January. The Dublin side, meanwhile will be seeking to avenge their recent defeat at the same venue as they bid for their first ever A.I.L. and become only the second Club from the Capital to win this title, since St. Mary’s College in the year 2000.
The first of the Division 2 semi finals sees U.C.C. who are promoted to the top flight for the first time in their history take on Munster Senior Cup finalists Old Crescent at the Mardyke and while ‘College are already assured of promotion they will also be aiming to avenge their single point home defeat against ‘Crescent last October and retain the title they won last season against Young Munster.
The other semi final between Ballynahinch and Lansdowne has been fixed for May 4th as Ballynahinch must complete their league program when their outstanding game against Highfield goes ahead this weekend. The Co. Dublin side only need a victory to assure themselves of promotion to the top flight and should record a victory.
Fourth-placed Midleton, who missed out on promotion from the Third Division travel to Galway to take on leaders Corinthians and they will be looking to make it two wins out of two against the home side as they recorded a 22-0 home win when the sides last met at Towns Park in January.
Sunday’s Well and back-to-back Munster Junior League champions Cashel go head to head in a Division 3 relegation play-off at Musgrave Park. A win is vital for the ‘Well if they are to remain in the A.I.L. and keep their senior status, while a win for the Tipperary side will see them become only the second Club from the Premier County to compete at this level with Nenagh Ormond and consign the ‘Well to the Munster Junior League for next season after a stretch of eighty six years as a senior club.
The Munster Junior League Division 3 title is up for grabs on Sunday as promoted Limerick sides Galbally and St. Mary’s face off at Kilfeacle. A win for the Limerick City side will be the first step on the road to restoring the Corbally club to former glories, while the County Limerick side would see the Division 3 title as a bonus for achieving their first ever promotion in their thirty-seven year history.
The Martin O’Sullivan Cup semi finals are also down for decision this weekend and this is a last chance for Clubs in Division 3 of the Junior League that missed out on promotion to finish their season with a piece of silverware.
Carrick-on-Suir, who will be aiming to make up for the disappointment of missing out on promotion in each of the last two seasons, have a tricky away tie when they make the long journey to the Kingdom to take on Castleisland at Crageens.
Killarney, who enjoyed a good innings late on in the season make the long journey to face Waterford City at Kilbarry.
The O’Neill Cup final is also down for decision as holders Skibbereen take on Kinsale in Monday night’s decider at Musgrave Park. Skibb’ are having a busy end of season on South Munster Cup competitions as they have also qualified for the County Cup final where they will meet holders Cobh Pirates in a repeat pairing of last year’s final, which was won by the ‘Pirates, who have dominated this competition in recent years. The West Cork Club have two chances of finishing the season with silverware, following their narrow defeat at the hands of Thurles in the recent Junior Plate final.
THURSDAY 23rd APRIL
Webb Cup:Shannon v Garryowen,Coonagh,6.45;
Kelly Cup Semi Final:Skibbereen v Bantry Bay,Skibbereen,7.00;
Casey Cup Final:Galbally v Waterpark,Waterford,6.30;
North Under 15 Cup:Thomond v St. Senan’s,Fitxgerald Park,7.00;
Young Munster v U.L. Bohemian,Clifford Park,7.00;
FRIDAY 24th APRIL
Magners League:Munster v Llanelli Scarlets,Musgrave Park,7.35;
North Under 14 Cup:Newcastle West v Bruff,Newcastle West,6.30;
Richmond v Shannon,Canal Bank,7.00;
North Under 13 Cup Semi Finals: Bruff v Young Munster,Bruff,7.00;
Newcastle West/Garryowen v Shannon,TBA,7.00;
SATURDAY 25th APRIL
AIB All Ireland League Division 1 Semi Finals:Cork Constitution v Clontarf,Temple Hill,2.00;
Shannon v Garryowen,Coonagh,2.30;
Division 2 Semi Final:U.C.C. v Old Crescent,Mardyke,2.30;
Division 2:Ballynahinch v Highfield,Ballymacarn Park,2.30;
Division 3 Semi Finals: Corinthians v Midleton,Corinthian Park,2.30;
Old Wesley v Queens University,Donnybrook,2.30;
AIB All Ireland League Division 3 Play Off:Sunday’s Well v Cashel,Musgrave Park,2.30;
Junior Inter Provincial:Munster v Leinster,Cashel,3.00;
Dave Dineen Cup Final:Ballincollig v Tralee,Mallow,5.00;
O’Carroll Plate Final:Richmond v U.L. Bohemian,Bruff,2.00;
North Under 14 Cup:U.L. Bohemian v Thomond,Annacotty,11.30;
South Under 18 Cup Final:Bandon v Highfield,Musgrave Park,7.30;
South Under 18 Development League Final:Fermoy v Youghal,Midleton,2.30;
South Under 16 Plate Semi Finals:Dunmanway v Kanturk/Cobh Pirates,Dunmanway,11.30;
Fermoy v Muskerry,Fermoy,11.30;
South Under 14 Cup Final:Bandon v Sunday’s Well,Musgrave Park,6.00;
South Under 14 B Cup:Kinsale v Skibbereen,Clonakilty,12.00;
Under 12 Brian Fitzgerald Tournament,Corbally,10.30;
SUNDAY 26th APRIL
Munster Junior League Division 3 Final:Galbally v St. Mary’s,Kilfeacle,3.00;
Martin O’Sullivan Cup Semi Finals:Waterford City v Killarney,Waterford,3.00;
Castleisland v Carrick-on-Suir,Castleisland,3.00;
Junior League South Final:Cork Constitution v U.C.C.,Temple Hill,3.00;
Munster Junior 2 League Semi Final:Garryowen v Bandon,Dooradoyle,2.30;
U.C.C. v Cashel,Curaheen Road,3.00;
Paul Twomey Cup Final:Muskerry v Carrigaline,Rathcooney,3.00;
Mick Barry Cup: Corca Dhuibhne v Skibbereen,Tralee,2.30;
Junior 4 Cup Final:Listowel v Mallow,Tralee,12.30;
North Under 18 Cup Semi Final:Newcastle West v Ennis,Newcastle West,12.30;
North Under 16 Cup Semi Finals: Shannon v Thomond,Coonagh,11.30;
U.L. Bohemian v Young Munster,Annacotty,11.30;
North Under 14 Cup:St. Senan’s v Old Crescent,Jim Slattery Park,11.30;
South Under 16 Cup Final:Crosshaven v Highfield,Musgrave Park,12.00;
MONDAY 27th APRIL
O’Neill Cup Final:Kinsale v Skibbereen,Musgrave Park,7.00;
WEDNESDAY 29th APRIL
Munster Junior League Division 2:Clanwilliam v Ennis,Clanwilliam Park,7.00;
Junior 2 Cup Final:Cork Constitution v U.C.C.,Musgrave Park,7.00;
THURSDAY 30th APRIL
Cork County Cup:Cobh Pirates v Skibbereen,Musgrave Park,7.00;
Garryowen Cup Final:Galbally v Newport,Kilfeacle,7.30;