MU Barnhall make a first senior appearance at Dubarry Park when Buccaneers throw down the gauntlet to the Division 2A leaders in this Energia All-Ireland League clash on Saturday, Kick-off is 2:30pm.
MU Barnhall have enjoyed a couple of superb seasons including a very lengthy winning sequence that was halted only recently at Rainey Old Boys.
They returned to winning ways at UL Bohemian after that but then came acropper at home last weekend when Queen’s University came out on top by 49-31.
Two defeats in the past three matches is unusual for MU Barnhall and they will be more than eager to resume their drive for promotion which looked a foregone conclusion just last month.
They proved too strong and smart for Buccs at Parsonstown but the midlanders will be boosted by a return to sparkling form against UL Bohs.
There the Pirates put in an impressive all-round performance that, if repeated on Saturday, will ask serious questions of the division’s pacesetters.
Martin Staunton is likely to miss out through injury but, hopefully, Buccs may finally get some game time from Conor Kenny.
His power and experience would greatly benefit the Shannonsiders especially as, in this on-going wet weather, Dubarry Park is likely to be a testing surface. Maybe a switch to Creggs would not be a bad idea!
If the Athlone side field a squad close to last Saturday’s and if the players can repeat the intensity, precision and focus of that contest, then Buccaneers can spring a surprise.
U-20’s away to Dublin University
Buccs U-20’s will be keen to get back to winning ways in the JP Fanagan Leinster League Premier 2 Division when they travel to Santry to take on Dublin University on Sunday.
Buccs had a bad day at NUIG last week but were missing a number of key personnel.
They will need to regroup swiftly for this challenge as Trinity are just one point behind them in the league table with a game in hand.
Buccs came out on top 29-7 when the sides met in Athlone but it is likely to be a lot closer on this occasion. Kick-off is 3pm.