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EYHL Women’s Weekend Round-Up, Oct 11th 2020

Railway Union continue to set the pace in the women’s EY Hockey League as they ground out the points 1-0 from their home date with reigning champions Pegasus at Park Avenue.

It means, with three wins, they now have as many as they managed in the whole of last season while Pegs returned to Belfast from Dublin with nothing to show for their efforts for a second successive week. Kate Lloyd provided the only goal, finishing off from Ailish Long’s baseline pull-back early in the second half to make the difference.

Limerick’s Catholic Institute are the other form side and they recorded the biggest win, 5-1, in the women’s EYHL since back in March 2019 when they swept aside Muckross at Rosbrien.

Naomi Carroll and Louise McCollum traded goals before Roisin Upton nailed a pair of set pieces while Rosie Pratt and Aoife Hickey put Insta on course for seven points out of nine and second spot.

Old Alex lost their perfect record at the hands of Dublin rivals Loreto 4-3. The Beaufort club were good value for the result as they swept into a 4-1 lead with defenders Hannah Matthews and Grace McLoughlin combining for their first three and Grace Donald got the all-important fourth.

Alex fought back brilliantly with Nikki Evans and Deirdre Duke among the goals but Loreto held on for their second win.

Pembroke got their first points of the campaign with a strong 3-0 win at UCD with Sophie Dix and Emily Beatty putting them 2-0 up and Tori Wensley added to that early in the second half.

Cork Harlequins did not travel to play Belfast Harlequins over Covid concerns in the weekend’s other tie on the schedule.

Women’s EYHL: Catholic Institute 5 (R Upton 2, A Hickey, R Pratt, N Carroll) Muckross 1 (L McCollum); Old Alex 3 (N Evans 2, D Duke) Loreto 4 (H Matthews 2, G McLoughlin, G Donald); Railway Union 1 (K Lloyd) Pegasus 0; UCD 0 Pembroke 3 (S Dix, E Beatty, T Wensley)

Off: Belfast Harlequins v Cork Harlequins

October 17th fixtures: Cork Harlequins v Railway Union, Farmers’ Cross, 1pm; Old Alex v Catholic Institute, Milltown, 1.30pm; Belfast Harlequins v Pegasus, Deramore Park, 2.30pm; Pembroke v Loreto, Serpentine Avenue, 2.30pm; UCD v Muckross, Belfield, 2.50pm

Day three extended reports
Railway Union 1 (K Lloyd) Pegasus 0

Kate Lloyd struck her third goal of the season to keep Railway Union’s excellent start to the season, meaning they now have as many weeks after three of this season as they did from the entirety of last term.

They shaded the first quarter in terms of possession and had the only corner saved by Megan Todd with chances at a premium. Sarah Hawkshaw almost unlocked the door for Lloyd and Martha McCready but their shots just went off course before Grace O’Flanagan – back into the side for this tie – was called on to make a couple of saves on the half-time hooter, notably from Shirley McCay at full stretch.

The goal came early in the second half with Ailish Long making a great dart to the back line and she found Lloyd waiting in the middle to push in.

Pegasus upped the ante with Emma Quinn drawing the best from O’Flanagan while Olivia Berry won a corner which McCay again fired in dangerously but was repelled. The pressure was relentless in the final quarter but Pegasus could not find a way through and so they ended their second successive trip to Dublin without a result as Railway march on.

Catholic Institute 5 (R Upton 2, A Hickey, R Pratt, N Carroll) Muckross 1 (L McCollum)

Catholic Institute recorded their largest winning scoreline in the women’s EY Hockey League in over 18 months to move into second place in the competition with seven points from nine thus far. It took them seven minutes to get off the mark with a long corner move worked into Naomi Carroll who turned and fired home from mid-circle.

Muckross got back on terms in the 21st minute when Emma Mathews’ sumptuous pass found Louise McCollum rushing on at pace and she entered the circle before finishing off a great goal. Roisin Upton made sure parity was short lived with a powerful hit from the top of the circle and then Rosie Pratt struck for 3-1 from the second phase of a corner on her backhand.

It was 4-1 eight minutes into the second half when Aoife Hickey finished off an overload down the right wing with Roisin Begley to the fore in its conception. Upton dragged in the fifth goal as the Limerick side continue their excellent start to the campaign.

UCD 0 Pembroke 3 (S Dix, E Beatty, T Wensley)

Pembroke produced an all-action performance to get their first win of the season as UCD’s tough start continues following a 3-0 home defeat. The visitors were good value for the result as they controlled long periods of the first half and should have been in front when Aisling Naughton drove through and slipped the ball past goalkeeper Clodagh Cassin to Ava Beatty but she could only slam the ball onto the post with her shot.

It was 1-0 when Gillian Pinder’s pin-point cross from the left baseline was met first time by Sophie Dix arriving at pace and it was another powerful ball into the mix that created goal number two. This time, Leah McGuire strode forward from the back and bashed into the circle where Emily Beatty met the ball perfectly for 2-0.

Pembroke had a couple more corner chances – one which was initially awarded as a stroke before being down-graded – but they had to wait until the second half for their third goal. Pinder’s first-up shot was well blocked by Cassin but Tori Wensley was there to poke home the rebound.

UCD improved after that but never looked like threatening a comeback with Emma Buckley very assured between the posts while Hannah McLoughlin’s pair of corner sweeps were both dealt with well.

Old Alex 3 (N Evans 2, D Duke) Loreto 4 (H Matthews 2, G McLoughlin, G Donald)

Defenders Hannah Matthews and Grace McLoughlin provided the set piece goals that laid the base for Loreto’s second win of the season against title hopefuls Old Alex. They built a healthy lead and looked in good shape until Alex stormed back in the last quarter but too late to take anything from the tie.

The Beaufort peppered the Alex goal in the first quarter with Carolyn Crampton making a string of saves while they also had a goal disallowed in favour of a corner before taking the lead with Matthews on the left behind-the-back switch to sweep in.

They looked more likely to score again but were undone by some quick-thinking by Jeamie Deacon whose free was perfectly worked to Nikki Evans on the right post to deflect in, 1-1.

But Matthews soon had Loreto back in front with a carbon-copy corner routine, a step-over switch and a powerful slap-shot. And while their numerous shots from play were repelled by Crampton, Loreto kept running up the corners to move 3-1 up in the second half with Grace McLoughlin this time going direct.

Grace Donald extended the lead to 4-1 when she finished off from open play following a swift attack down the right wing.

Alex got one back when Deirdre Duke brilliantly took down an overhead and rode a hefty tackle before driving on a smacking into the bottom corner. A volley of four corners for Alex were snuffed out but they got further back into the tie when Duke drove on again and while her shot was blocked, Evans snapped up the rebound with two minutes to go.

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EYHL Women’s Weekend Round-Up, October 4th 2020

Old Alex and Railway Union sit top of the women’s EY Hockey League table following their narrow wins on day two of the competition, both making it six points from six with 2-1 victories. 

For Alex, they impressed in a 2-1 success against Pembroke with Emma Russell and Emilie Ryan Doyle doing the damage. The latter scored with six minutes to go and while Sally Campbell got one back in the dying minutes, it was enough for the Milltown club to secure their second win. 

For Railway, they trailed to a goal from Muckross’s Sarah McAuley at half-time in their game at Grange Road but Sarah Hawkshaw continued her immaculate form to score the equaliser from a Martha McCready cross and then she set up the winner for Zara Delany. Hawkshaw has either scored assisted each of Railway’s goals this season. 

Loreto won the big battle with Pegasus in a meeting between the top two of the last two years, again via a 2-1 scoreline. The Beaufort club’s penalty corner efficiency was the key with clever moves leading to first half goals from Sarah Torrans and Siofra O’Brien. Ruth Maguire got one back from a penalty stroke with 14 minutes to go but they could not find an equaliser. 

Julia McCarthy’s debut goal for Cork Harlequins with five minutes left earned them a 1-1 draw against Catholic Institute in the Munster derby. Insta had led via Naomi Carroll’s goal in the first half but they were denied a second successive win by that late goal. 

UCD and Belfast Harlequins also drew 1-1, Rachel Kelly getting her first goal since joining UCD during the summer to cancel out Emma Uprichard’s strike for the Belfast side. 

 

Women’s EYHL Division 1 results: Cork Harlequins 1 (J McCarthy) Catholic Institute 1 (N Carroll); Loreto 2 (S Torrans, S O’Brien) Pegasus 1 (R Maguire); Muckross 1 (S McAuley) Railway Union 2 (S Hawkshaw, Z Delany); Pembroke 1 (S Campbell) Old Alex 2 (E Russell, E Ryan Doyle); UCD 1 (R Kelly) Belfast Harlequins 1 (E Uprichard) 

October 10th fixtures: Belfast Harlequins v Cork Harlequins, Deramore Park, 1pm; Catholic Institute v Muckross, Rosbrien, 1pm; Old Alex v Loreto, Milltown, 1.30pm; UCD v Pembroke, Belfield, 2.50pm; Railway Union v Pegasus, Park Avenue, 3pm 

 

Women’s EY Hockey League – day two extended reports 

Loreto 2 (S Torrans, S O’Brien) Pegasus 1 (R Maguire) 

Loreto’s penalty corner variations proved critical in their victory over Pegasus to get their first win of the competition, bouncing back from their opening day defeat to Railway Union at Beaufort. 

In an evenly contested battle, with defences largely on top, the set pieces were vital. Niamh McIvor’s powerful shot earned a corner for Pegasus early on but Loreto swarmed well to shut out Kerri McDonald’s angled effort. In reply, the Dubliners went in front from their second corner, switching right to Lisa Mulcahy who swept to the right post where Sarah Torrans was waiting to guide home. 

The next variation saw Hannah Matthews pick out Siofra O’Brien at the injector spot and she comfortably slotted home. Their captain Sarah Evans had to be carried off injured before half-time but they did look more likely to extend their lead with Yasmin Pratt cracking an effort into Megan Todd’s chest protection while Ali Meeke was also blocked by a combination of Todd and Shirley McCay’s instincts to cover. 

Pegs began to have more and more of the game as time wore on and they ramped up the tension when Ruth Maguire converted a penalty stroke with 14 minutes still to play. Try as they might, though, Loreto’s defence held up for what could be an important win over the perennial title rivals. 

 

Pembroke 1 (S Campbell) Old Alex 2 (E Russell, E Ryan Doyle) 

Old Alex made it two away wins from two to share the lead at this early stage of the campaign with goals from Emma Russell and Emilie Ryan Doyle putting them ahead of Pembroke at Serpentine Avenue.  

Nikki Evans almost drew first blood but her reverse was denied by international team mate Emma Buckley in the early exchanges while Buckley was also there to save a corner soon after. Another Alex effort then pinged the crossbar as the visitors enjoyed the best of the early exchanges. 

Pembroke replied in kind with a couple of corners in the second quarter but they could not make them count and so the half ended scoreless. The deadlock was broken, though, early in the second half when Russell latched onto a rebound early in the second half to add extra bite to the contest. 

Gillian Pinder drew a fine save from Carolyn Crampton to close out the third quarter as Pembroke pushed forward with gusto but found an unyielding defence in front of them. Emily Beatty was also kept out by Crampton before Alex made the key incision from a corner, Millie O’Donnell picking out Emilie Ryan Doyle who deflected in. 

That came with just six minutes to go; Pembroke pulled one back within 60 seconds courtesy of some fine stickwork from Sally Campbell and the hosts withdrew their goalkeeper for the final two minutes but Alex held on. 

 

Cork Harlequins 1 (J McCarthy) Catholic Institute 1 (N Carroll) 

Julia McCarthy’s debut goal gave Cork Harlequins a point from their opening tie of the women’s EY Hockey League season from a high tempo Munster derby. 

The Farmers’ Cross side did owe a lot to their fantastic goalkeeper Lorna Bateman who made several crucial saves but coach Darren Collins was left reasonably satisfied with the outcome after a summer in which the club saw a big turnover in personnel. 

We went into yesterday a bit concerned as we hadn’t been able to get enough practice matches beforehand,” he said after the tie. With eight out of a squad of 14 Under-18, having such a young team will take time to get used to the pace of EYHL hockey.  

“Institute had more chances than us and probably were unlucky not to take a few but I was delighted with the way our team fought back to level the match.” 

After a scoreless first quarter, Insta went in front before half-time straight from a Quins’ penalty corner, Aoife Hickey and Roise Pratt working the ball up the pitch to Naomi Carroll to finish off. 

From there, Bateman played a key role in keeping the gap at one goal while there were strong performances from Lauren Cripps, Cliodhna Sargent, Yvonne O’Byrne and Michelle Barry.  

They held on long enough and McCarthy took their chance when it arrived inside the last five minutes. There was still time for Bateman to make yet another key block to retain the point. 

 

Muckross 1 (S McAuley) Railway Union 2 (S Hawkshaw, Z Delany) 

Railway came back from a goal down to record their second 2-1 win of the season with Sarah Hawkshaw playing a crucial role once again. She has either assisted or scored each of their goals this season in a hugely impressive start to the campaign. 

In an end-to-end first half, the first quarter saw an exchange of corners but no goals. Muckross, though, took the lead in the second quarter when Anna O’Flanagan drew a penalty corner which Sarah McAuley swept in from the top. 

Railway got back on terms when Sarah Patton overlapped down the right and slipped a pass to Martha McCready who in turn picked out Hawkshaw who peeled around to the back post to tip in. 

Hawkshaw then turned over the ball and won a free which she took on herself, racing down the right and into the D before laying on for Zara Delany to sweep in first time with about 12 minutes to go. 

 

UCD 1 (R Kelly) Belfast Harlequins 1 (E Uprichard) 

UCD and Belfast Harlequins picked up their first point each of the season from a hard-fought contest at Belfield. Quins looked the more on form side in the first quarter KJ Marshall needing to be alert to deny Jenna Watt while Clodagh Cassin was the first goalkeeper called into action. 

They took the lead in the second quarter via Ulster underage interpro player Emma Uprichard for an important lead. The students grew into the contest with the pick of their play featuring Katherine Egan’s lovely cross-field pass to Sarah Young which ended up in a corner and an Egan shot that was repelled. 

The Belfast side – who were without injured international trio Megan Frazer, Lizzie Colvin and Serena Barr – had a couple of big corner chances to extend their lead in the second half. But UCD forced their way back into the reckoning with a dominant final quarter with the goal eventually arriving from Rachel Kelly in her college debut from a penalty corner won by Emma Young. 

Three more corners went the students way but they could not get by Suzanne Taylor from those chances and Harlequins held on for a point.  

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EYHL Weekend Round-Up, October 4th 2020

Monkstown, YMCA and Lisnagarvey kept their 100% records in tact with narrow victories on day two of the men’s EY Hockey League while Three Rock Rovers notched their first success of the campaign, too. 

For Monkstown, they have the edge on goal difference at this early stage thanks to Jeremy Duncan’s second goal in a week as they shaded Annadale 2-1. 

The sky-blues were in a real battle when James Clark cancelled out Andrew Fogarty’s opening goal at Lagan College before Duncan popped up with the winner in the fourth quarter. 

YM, meanwhile, withstood a late UCD onsalught but were good value for their 2-1 success at Belfield. It was built on a fine first half performance in which Ross Henderson and Ben Campbell put them two to the good. Guy Sarratt got one back but he could not capitalise on five penalty corners on the final hooter for a would-be equaliser. 

Garvey got the better of Pembroke with Andy Williamson’s heavily deflected shot the odd goal in five, 3-2, at Serpentine Avenue. Pembroke led via Nick Burns but Daniel Nelson and Troy Chambers swapped the lead by half-time. Alan Sothern equalised for 2-2 before Williamson’s crucial strike. 

Glenanne let a lead slip for the second time in a week in the closing minutes as Eddie Rowe scored twice from play for Banbridge to earn a 2-2 draw. 

Stephen Brownlow and Shane O’Donoghue both scored into the bottom left corner for a 2-0 lead the Glens held into the last six minutes before Rowe wrecked their hopes. 

Three Rock ran out 6-1 winners over Corinthian in the Marlay derby; it was tight at 1-0 at half-time from Evan Jennings’ goal and Rovers only led 2-1 at three quarter time. But a double from Ben Johnson and further goals from Ben Walker and Sam Grace made for a handy three points. 

 

Men’s EYHL results: Annadale 1 (J Clark) Monkstown 2 (A Fogarty, J Duncan); Corinthian 1 (D Howard) Three Rock Rovers 6 (B Johnson 2, E Jennings, R Canning, B Walker, S Grace); Glenanne 2 (S Brownlow, S O’Donoghue) Banbridge 2 (E Rowe 2); Pembroke 2 (N Burns, A Sothern) Lisnagarvey 3 (D Nelson, T Chambers, A Williamson); UCD 1 (G Sarratt) YMCA 2 (R Henderson, B Campbell) 

 

October 10th fixtures: Lisnagarvey v Corinthian, Comber Road, 2pm; Monkstown v UCD, Merrion Fleet Arena, 2.15pm; Pembroke v Glenanne, Serpentine Avenue, 2.30pm; Banbridge v YMCA, Havelock Park, 2.45pm; Three Rock Rovers v Annadale, Grange Road, 2.45pm 

 

Men’s EYHL – day two extended reports

Pembroke 2 (N Burns, A Sothern) Lisnagarvey 3 (D Nelson, T Chambers, A Williamson) 

Andy Williamson’s deflected corner earned Lisnagarvey the points as they won a wide-open contest with Pembroke at Serpentine Avenue. His side had the majority of the clear-cut chances but they found Mark Ingram in strong form throughout as he started off the game by brilliantly keeping out Troy Chambers while Richard Sweetnam to keep out a Daniel Nelson shot with the goal beckoning. 

Pembroke went in front, however, when Kirk Shimmins took a free quickly and whipped a reverse to the right post where Nick Burns turned in the chance. 

Garvey levelled with a cracking goal with Cole Chambers chasing after a long ball before the ball was worked into the cavalry with Daniel Nelson’s first touch lifting the ball over a defensive stick before pummeling in his chance.  

It was 2-1 at half-time when Garvey were quickest to clean up the ball off a sharp Ingram save with Troy Chambers scooping up the rebound chance. Into the second half and Ingram had to be at full stretch to keep out Mark McNellis but Pembroke – with Shimmins on his way to the sin bin – always have an ace up their sleeve in Alan Sothern and he got his customary goal when Rob McCollum picked him out at the front post from the left. 

Williamson, though, found what proved to be the winner a couple of minutes later with his heavily deflected drag-flick. The game stayed very much live in the final quarter with Ingram keeping Lorimer out while Troy Chambers was narrowly wide with another couple of chances. 

It left them open for a sucker-punch and it almost arrived a couple of times. From Pembroke’s only corner, James Milliken rebuffed Sothern and Harry Spain shots while McCollum’s fierce effort went over the bar. 

 

UCD 1 (G Sarratt) YMCA 2 (R Henderson, B Campbell) 

YMCA withstood five penalty corners on the final whistle to make it two wins from two in the men’s EY Hockey League and continue their excellent start to the campaign. They were good value for their 2-0 half-time lead after Ross Henderson scored at the right post in the first quarter and they were two up when Ben Campbell’s drag-flick had too much power for Stephen Dawson. 

They looked the more likely to score next for the remainder of the first half and had further chances in the third quarter before UCD fought back with Guy Sarratt flicking a corner high into the net past Cameron Larkin, stepping in at the start of this season for the injured Jakim Bernsden. 

It kept he game alive and when UCD won a corner on the whistle, it gave them a chance of nicking a point for the second week running but Larkin’s defensive unit – with Grant Glutz to the fore – secured the three points. 

“To keep out five corners on the hooter with Guy Sarratt flicking, to keep it at 2-1, the guys showed a lot of effort,” said YM coach Jason Klinkradt.  

“The guys pride them on their hard work in defence before attack. It was Grant’s turn this week. I am maybe a little disappointed we didn’t put the game to rest a little earlier with the chances that came along but that chances are coming is the important thing. 

“We kept everyone over the summer. It’s a tight-knit group and that’s important in these pandemic times to keep everyone going. Very early days, though. 

His counterpart Michael Styles was disappointed with how his side played, saying: “YM were very good, hungry and played a high tempo and we didn’t match them. At 2-0, we got a kick and started playing and took a few risks.  

We need to start games better and perform throughout and not wait for a kick-start. At 2-1, our performance improved. Regardless of the corners at the end, we have to look at the whole game. 

  

Annadale 1 (J Clark) Monkstown 2 (A Fogarty, J Duncan) 

Annadale came close to grabbing a point at Lagan College as they almost gave ambitious Monkstown a shock but Jeremy Duncan’s late goal ultimately proved decisive for the Dubliners. 

Andrew Fogarty put Town in front in the first half when he knocked in a rebound but Dale fought back strongly, particularly in the third quarter, with James Clark hitting the crossbar while Adam McAllister shone once again. They got their reward following a corner melee which saw Dave Fitzgerald saved twice before the ball was switched back to injector Clark who got down low to push home. 

The sky-blues, however, responded in kind and got their winner when they unpicked a packed circle to find Duncan alone and able to slot home his second goal in two games since joining the club. 

 

Glenanne 2 (S Brownlow, S O’Donoghue) Banbridge 2 (E Rowe 2) 

Eddie Rowe’s double in the last six minutes earned Banbridge a share of the spoils as Glenanne were left to rue a second draw of the campaign from a winning position in the last ten minutes. 

Banbridge came within inches of a first goal in the first minute when Josh Moffett’s batted shot hit the post but they fell behind the seventh minute when Richard Couse won a corner. Stephen Brownlow produced a low push down the stick side to put the St Andrew’s hosts in front. 

The next Glens corner was charged down a minute later while Luke Roleston saved well from Gary Shaw. They continued to be on top in the second quarter and doubled their lead from their third corner, Shane O’Donoghue finding the same spot with his drag-flick. 

Bann, though, started to find plenty of joy in their press and ran up five corners in the second quarter with Iain Walker keeping out Eugene Magee, Owen Magee and Philip Brown. 

In the second half, Glenanne looked the more likely to extend their lead with Jason Rogan twice drawing strong saves from Roleston. On the the three quarter time hooter, Bann had a deflected effort chalked off for interference of the first runner, leaving it 2-0. 

But the pressure was incessant in the final quarter with Bann penning Glenanne back throughout. Rowe got the first goal back with a brilliant catch from Walker’s high booted clearance, controlling and then volleying back with interest with six minutes to go. 

And the teenager repeated the trick two minutes later with a near post touch from a ball in from the left to complete the comeback. Brownlow almost nicked the full points in the dying seconds but his reverse under pressure was bundled wide and the draw remained. 

 

Corinthian 1 (D Howard) Three Rock Rovers 6 (B Johnson 2, E Jennings, R Canning, B Walker, S Grace) 

Three Rock Rovers raced clear of their Dublin 16 rivals at Whitechurch Park in the final quarter after an initially tight contest.  

Following a minute’s silence for former Irish international RD Mellon, Rovers had the better of the early exchanges with Charlie Henderson twice keeping out Peter Blakeney while Conor Quinn did well at the far end to block a couple of corners on the quarter-time whistle. 

The visitors went in front on the half hour when Jody Hosking’s long ball from a free out found its way to Ben Walker behind the last defender and he slipped to Evan Jennings. The young striker slipped the ball home on his reverse.  

Ross Canning’s sharp finish made it 2-0 early in the second half as Harry Morris’s miscued shot popped up nicely and he slashed in with a one-handed effort. Davy Howard got one back from a corner in the 40th minute to keep the contest alive into the final quarter. 

But Rovers’ connections came together to devastating effect. They scored direct from the restart with Walker getting on the end of the move, whipping home a reverse from the top of the circle. Their press put Corinthian in a muddle soon after with possession robbed on the 23, leading to Ben Johnson firing home another backhand shot. 

The Waterford man hit the post from a corner before the set-piece was reset; at the second time of asking, his heavily deflected drag sent Henderson the wrong way and nestled in the backboard. Sam Grace finished off the scoring with his first goal for the club from play, Daragh Walsh’s slipped pass allowing him to trap and bang. 

“It must be a while!” Grace said when asked about a rare field-goal. “Right place, right time I guess – just had an idea where the goal was and pulled on it. I was keeping an eye on what the forwards were doing during the week. 

He feels his side are in a good place now for the season ahead with Walsh a big plus: “We knew Corinthians would be hard to break down and they have a fierce fight in them. We did think when we got the third that we would kick on. Daragh does make a big difference and adds a serious amount of quality. It’s great to have him back.  

 

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Hockey Ireland Youth Panel

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Irish Hockey Trophy Opening Round Postponed

Following a Board meeting last night the decision has been made to postpone the first round of the Irish Hockey Trophy which was due to be played on Saturday 10th October.

These games will now take place on Saturday, 14th November.