Searching for consistency
Unlike this time last year, the ESB League slows down for the Christmas period in an unpredictable mode. Three clubs share the lead, four more are in close pursuit, and in stark contrast to 12 months ago, no one has yet displayed any true consistency.
But Neptune have perhaps fared worst of all. They had already established their winning lead at this point last season. Now they lie just four places from the bottom, with Wednesday's 85-69 loss to Limerick certainly not helping matters.
At the top, the Saints, Killester and Waterford are level on 18 points, although the latter two have a game in hand. UCD Marian have surprised a lot of people in recent weeks and currently lie fourth, while Notre Dame, in joint fifth, also benefit from at least two games in hand over the leaders.
Notre Dame are also one of the few teams in action between now and the end of the year when they travel to Killarney next Wednesday. Next Friday, Neptune host Killarney and the final two games of the year are on Saturday 30th, when Limerick play Waterford and Sligo host Star of the Sea. The women's league is on a break until January 6th.
Men's fixtures: December 27th - Killarney v Notre Dame, Pres Killarney, 7.30; 29th - Neptune v Killarney, Neptune Stadium, 8.00; 30th - Limerick v Waterford, University Arena, 7.30, Sligo v Star of the Sea, Sligo SC, 7.30.