UL Eagles welcome champions UCC Demons to the UL Arena in a Munster derby this weekend, with the Cork visitors struggling for form since last month’s Cup loss to Templeogue.
It took Demons extra-time to get over Moycullen at home last week and they face another big challenge in Limerick.
Tralee Warriors are sure to attract another bumper attendance to the Tralee Sports complex for their clash with Eanna. It has been a tough fortnight for the Kerry side, having lost their main sponsor, Irish TV, but coach Mark Bernsen isn’t overly downbeat.
“The support we have in the town is phenomenal and, hopefully, we will give them something to smile about on Saturday,” said Bernsen.
UCD Marian coach Ioannis Liapakis has called on his players to prove their SuperLeague title credentials against Killester at Belfield.
These clubs have produced tremendous games in recent seasons, and Liapakis knows a win this weekend will lay down a huge marker.
“We have assembled a good squad this season, but with the competitiveness in this league, you can slip up in any game if you lack focus,” he said.
American Jermain Turner is the Killester dangerman, but coach Liapakis insists that Killester are not a one-man team.
“Turner is naturally their key player, but when you look at their Irish players — Paddy Sullivan, Cian Nihill, and Ciaran Roe — they are all natural scorers.”
Another Dublin derby this weekend is the clash of Griffith Swords Thunder and DCU Saints. Swords Thunder are in hot pursuit of leaders Templeogue and coach Dave Baker is adamant his side can make a serious title challenge.
He explained: “We have a decent side, but getting the players focused over four quarters is what we need to improve on. DCU have a number of quality players capable of punishing teams and we will need to be tuned in on how we defend.”
Belfast Star trail Moycullen by the minimum in their second leg of the Pat Duffy National Cup and a full house is guaranteed at the Methodist College.
In the Women’s Super League, leaders UCC Glanmire travel west to play NUIG Mystics, while Liffey Celtics are expected to take maximum points at home to Waterford Wildcats. There is also a full fixture list in the men’s division first round National Cup, where the big game will see reigning champions Maree of Galway hosting Keane’s SuperValu Killorglin.
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