Limerick represent Munster for the second successive year in the men’s National Indoor Trophy, hoping to spring an ambush on the code’s big guns at Galway’s Kingfisher Hall on Sunday.
They face Leinster runners-up Railway Union (9.30am) in the semi-final, hoping to cause a shock and reach the final later that day.
The progression follows a truncated Munster championship in which Luke Cardy ran riot, netting 12 times in four games, while Nick Lampp also played a key role with his composed skills.
Whether they can contain a Railway side who had eight competitive fixtures over six weeks and feature indoor experts like German player Bjorn Daase, Irish panellist Eoin MacArthur and goalkeeper Stephen O’Keeffe is another matter.
The second semi-final features champions Three Rock Rovers and Ulster winners Banbridge.
There will be no women’s side from Munster, however, as the local championship was cancelled due to widespread withdrawals.
As a result, two Leinster sides — Railway Union and Muckross — will compete along with hosts Galways and Ards from Ulster.
There is a hope more indoor-specific dates will be allocated in the calendar in future by the local schedulers rather than running the event concurrently with outdoor competitions.
There is an abundance of big outdoor games this weekend with the EY Hockey League returning after a six-week break.
That layoff has given Cork Harlequins more time to get the experienced Yvonne O’Byrne and Cliodhna Sargent closer to fitness; they return to action against Railway Union at Farmers Cross tomorrow.
It is a crucial tie for Darren Collins’ Quins in eighth, meeting the side directly above them.
Collins’ side have a very busy schedule on the agenda with a number of Mount Mercy schoolgirls — who reached the Munster Senior Cup final this week – in his panel.
Catholic Institute has a similarly heavy-load with 10 schoolgirls in the panel with a number from Crescent to the fore.
Roisin Upton could possibly make her first club appearance of the season against UCD tomorrow while Sarah Fitzgerald and Bella Murphy have added to their squad for 2020. On the flip side, Jane Kirby is on placement in Luxembourg and so will miss most games.
The women’s EYHL2 also returns; anything other than victory will probably put paid to UCC and Cork C of I’s chances of a semi-final spot.
The students host bottom side Greenfields before meeting runaway leaders Ards in a fortnight. Their charge has been powered by player-of-the-year Jenny Clein.
In men’s Munster Division One, it’s derby day, with Cork C of I hosting Harlequins and the former aiming to continue their winning run.