EY Hockey League preview: Old Alexandra and Pembroke look to consolidate at the top

Institute look to maintain perfect record agains Dublin sides; Pegasus host Cork

Old Alexandra have leapfrogged Pegasus at the top of the EY Hockey League. Photograph: Rowland White/Inpho

Old Alexandra have leapfrogged Pegasus at the top of the EY Hockey League. Photograph: Rowland White/Inpho

 

A week after they leap-frogged Pegasus to go top of the EY Hockey League table, Old Alexandra and Pembroke Wanderers now face the challenge of holding on to their advantage with UCD and Catholic Institute their respective visitors, on Saturday.

While Pembroke’s 2-1 win over Pegasus - the Belfast side’s first defeat of the season - was the stand-out result from last weekend, Institute produced the comeback of the day when Roisin Upton’s hat-trick saw them beat UCD 3-2, having trailed 2-0.

That win put Institute level on points with Pegasus, two behind the leaders, and maintained their unbeaten run against Dublin sides this season; UCD (twice), Alexandra, Muckross and Loreto all failing to get the better of their Limerick opponents in previous outings.

Their meeting with Pembroke at Serpentine Avenue will then be a fascinating one, with Pembroke on a roll and seeking their fourth consecutive win.

Alexandra, meanwhile, will be aiming for their fifth successive victory when they host UCD, while Pegasus will expect to get back to winning ways when they head south to take on bottom club Cork Harlequins who are still looking for their first win of the campaign.

Fifth meets eighth in the table when Railway Union take on Belfast Harlequins at Park Avenue, while seventh meets ninth at Beaufort where Loreto play Muckross.

Meanwhile, the interprovincial under-21, 18 and 16 championships continue in Waterford on Sunday with Munster taking on Leinster in the under-21 event and Ulster facing Connacht in the two other age groups. The Ulster under-18 squad features a familiar name, none other than Amy Hunter who, last month, became the youngest ever player, male or female, to score a one-day international century when she hit 121 for Ireland against Zimbabwe in Harare.

Hockey League - Division One: Cork Harlequins v Pegasus, Farmers Cross, 12.45; Loreto v Muckross, Beaufort, 1.15; Old Alexandra v UCD, Alexandra College, 1.30; Railway Union v Belfast Harlequins, Park Avenue, 1.45; Pembroke Wanderers v Catholic Institute, Serpentine Avenue, 2.30.

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