Hockey: League and cup matches set up a busy weekend

Full round of league matches will be played on Saturday with Irish Senior Cup first round on Sunday

Several sides face a double-header this weekend as the attempts to clear the backlog created by the umpires' strike sees a full round of men's EY Hockey League matches on Saturday followed by the Irish Senior Cup first round on Sunday.

Crammed in are plenty of highlights, not least the meeting between Three Rock Rovers and Glenanne in the league and Banbridge's cup tie with Lisnagarvey.

The former pits the only sides to have won two from two so far. Rovers have been in cruise control, running up 11 goals against Annadale and Railway Union with new South African arrival Richard Pautz accounting for two of them.

However, they will be without key defender Luke Madeley who sustained an ankle injury two weeks ago and is in a protective boot.


Glenanne, for their part, are in rude health following a string of new arrivals this season and a change of scenery, moving from their spiritual west Dublin home to St Andrew’s in Booterstown to avail of the water-based pitch.

Richie Shaw’s return from Australia precipitated a win in Cork with a late pair of goals and they backed that up with a 3-2 win over Cookstown.

Joe Brennan is back in the coaching role at the Glens for a tie against a side he coached to the Irish Senior Cup in 2014.

The Sunday date between Bann and Garvey is always hotly anticipated. The Havelock Park hosts have missed the services of Irish internationals Eugene Magee and Johnny McKee while Sam Farson and Peter Brown were under the weather last weekend at EHL round1 one in Barcelona.

For Garvey, Paul Gleghorne has missed some of the early season action but they did impress in their opening 4-2 win of the campaign against Monkstown.

Bann lead into the Sunday cup tie with a home date against Annadale while Garvey will have to travel back up from Pembroke who they play on Saturday.

Stephen Findlater

Stephen Findlater

Stephen Findlater is a contributor to The Irish Times writing about hockey