Clonmel braced for weekend drama

A crucial weekend in the Munster junior league is in store as title contenders Clonmel and Newcastle West square off.

With both unbeaten thus far and locked on 32 points, the outcome of this one will go a long way in deciding the destination of the league crown.

Conor Cooney has been instrumental in Clonmel’s success to date, his accurate kicking setting up a strong platform, while also being central to numerous attacks. The experience of Neville Melbourne is another asset and they will be eager to win the crucial forward battle.

For Newcastle West the Kellys, Stephen and James, have been racking up the tries. It should be an intense game in front of a passionate crowd and prove an effective advertisement for Munster junior rugby.

Clonakilty are probably too far back to pose any major threat to either Clonmel or Newcastle West, but will be eager to solidify their third position. They host struggling Galbally who could be dragged into the relegation battle.

Two sides aiming for a top-four finish face-off in Tipperary as Kilfeacle host Skibbereen. Both had narrow losses in the Junior Clubs Challenge Cup, although Kilfeacle are buoyed by how close they pushed Clonmel.

St Senan’s are also striving for a top four finish and Cobh Pirates is a hurdle they should safely negotiate. Old Christians, meanwhile, hope they can damage Muskerry’s aspirations with a win at Rathcooney. Both Tralee and Kinsale will be desperate to pick up full points, faced with difficult home fixtures against St Mary’s and Waterpark, respectively.

In Division Two, Bandon should maintain their advantage at the head of the table with a home victory at the expense of Waterford City. Clanwilliam are best placed of the chasing pack, they travel to Killarney.

Thurles and Castleisland still harbour ambitions of obtaining one of the two promotion places, the former, who travel to Ballincollig, are two points behind Clanwilliam.

Castleisland make the trip to Newport who need a couple of more results to secure their safety. Youghal seek to pile pressure on struggling Crosshaven with a win away in Myrtleville.

In Division Three, North Cork rivals Fermoy and Charleville clash.

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