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UBL 2018/19

Talk about the men in white, and everything Ulster!!

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UBL 2018/19

Postby Columbo » Fri Aug 10, 2018 5:10 pm

This year is an interesting one for the league, given the behind the scenes war that seems to be ongoing between the IRFU - which wants to transition to an all Ireland semi-pro competition sitting below the provinces - and the bigger clubs, particularly in Leinster, for whom the status quo is working fine, and for some of whom at least, any change will result in a loss (of prestige, players, money, members, spectators or all the above). As far as I can tell the Ulster clubs are sitting on the sidelines a bit at the minute.

Interesting one for the Ulster clubs as well, as after years of neglect and under-performance, we finally have a few clubs in 1B, and the aim this year seems to be to concentrate resources in these clubs to get them back to the top tier. The result is that this year's 1B is a bit of a cracker for Ulster clubs with Ulster derbies all over the place - kicking off on 6th Oct with Ballymena vs Malone...

1B: Ballynahinch, Ballymena, Armagh, Banbridge, Malone
2A: Queen's
2B: Belfast Harlequins, Rainey, Dungannon
2C: Bangor, City of Derry, Omagh

Other things to watch down the divisions: can QUB pull together a decent squad and get up the divisions? It's would be nice to see some big clubs come to play at such good facilities.. Have 'Quins stopped the rot? Very poor show from them over the last few years, they need to get their act in gear..

To anyone who has never bothered checking out the AIL, I can actually highly recommend it. If you're an Irish rugby anorak, it's a good way to see how academy / fringe squad players look up against the kind of gnarly campaigners you get in 1A and 1B, as well as against their peers from the other provincial academies, and these days the quality of matches is pretty reliably high (at least in 1A/B). You can even get a seat out of the elements at Ballymena, Queens and Quins (possibly elsewhere) and shout out to the Binmen who have done a cracking job on the bar :thumleft:
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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Russ » Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:27 pm

UTB
Ex pro prop Michael Cromie appointed as club captain

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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Deraless » Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:49 pm

A wee seat would be nice at Hinch or Banbridge.

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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Columbo » Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:48 pm

Deraless wrote:A wee seat would be nice at Hinch or Banbridge.

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i actually think they should use the lower pitch at Hinch - very nice surrounded by the trees, and you can stand up on the bank and get some elevation for a good view of the pitch! Cut a few shallow terraces into the bank, stick in some wooden benches, bobs yer uncle!


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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Russ » Sat Aug 11, 2018 8:33 am

Do any AIL clubs (apart from Cork) have seats?

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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Tighthead Prod » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:06 am

Russ wrote:Do any AIL clubs (apart from Cork) have seats?

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UCD at Belfield Bowl
St Marys RFC
Clontarf if I remember correctly,
Bective Rangers and whoever they share the ground with at Donnybrook
Old Belvedere and Terenure have tiered concrete steps where you can plant an ample backside ...on a dry day
Obviously Lansdowne and Shannon if not playing on ''back pitches'' at Aviva and Thomond respectively , but that would be rare...Dont know if Wanderers still have any ''rights'' to play in main Aviva Stadium ??
Ballymena and Belfast Harlequins

...Im sure there are more

Russ, you really have to travel beyond the confines of Co Down :stir:
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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Russ » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:08 am

Tighthead Prod wrote:
Russ wrote:Do any AIL clubs (apart from Cork) have seats?

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UCD at Belfield Bowl
St Marys RFC
Clontarf if I remember correctly,
Bective Rangers and whoever they share the ground with at Donnybrook
Old Belvedere and Terenure have tiered concrete steps where you can plant an ample backside ...on a dry day
Obviously Lansdowne and Shannon if not playing on ''back pitches'' at Aviva and Thomond respectively , but that would be rare...Dont know if Wanderers still have any ''rights'' to play in main Aviva Stadium ??
Ballymena and Belfast Harlequins

...Im sure there are more

Russ, you really have to travel beyond the confines of Co Down :stir:
Went to Dungannon RFC once
Had to move abroad to cleanse

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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Dave » Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:21 am

Russ wrote:
Tighthead Prod wrote:
Russ wrote:Do any AIL clubs (apart from Cork) have seats?

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UCD at Belfield Bowl
St Marys RFC
Clontarf if I remember correctly,
Bective Rangers and whoever they share the ground with at Donnybrook
Old Belvedere and Terenure have tiered concrete steps where you can plant an ample backside ...on a dry day
Obviously Lansdowne and Shannon if not playing on ''back pitches'' at Aviva and Thomond respectively , but that would be rare...Dont know if Wanderers still have any ''rights'' to play in main Aviva Stadium ??
Ballymena and Belfast Harlequins

...Im sure there are more

Russ, you really have to travel beyond the confines of Co Down :stir:
Went to Dungannon RFC once
Had to move abroad to cleanse

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You could have just stayed in Dungannon.
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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Columbo » Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:05 pm

Tighthead Prod wrote:
Russ wrote:Do any AIL clubs (apart from Cork) have seats?

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UCD at Belfield Bowl
St Marys RFC
Clontarf if I remember correctly,
Bective Rangers and whoever they share the ground with at Donnybrook
Old Belvedere and Terenure have tiered concrete steps where you can plant an ample backside ...on a dry day
Obviously Lansdowne and Shannon if not playing on ''back pitches'' at Aviva and Thomond respectively , but that would be rare...Dont know if Wanderers still have any ''rights'' to play in main Aviva Stadium ??
Ballymena and Belfast Harlequins

...Im sure there are more

Russ, you really have to travel beyond the confines of Co Down :stir:
dont forget QUB - best ground in Ulster...


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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Columbo » Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:06 pm

Russ wrote:UTB
Ex pro prop Michael Cromie appointed as club captain

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good player.. I see Alex Thompson will be playing at Bann next year as well


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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Rooster » Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:12 pm

Russ wrote:Do any AIL clubs (apart from Cork) have seats?

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Seats at Malone and if you want you can sit inside at the upstairs bar in Armagh and watch the matches.
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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Russ » Sat Aug 11, 2018 3:16 pm

Rooster wrote:
Russ wrote:Do any AIL clubs (apart from Cork) have seats?

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Seats at Malone and if you want you can sit inside at the upstairs bar in Armagh and watch the matches.
What I'm saying is, maybe it's time for clubs to invest in the kind of small stands that are appearing in lower league english football

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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby UR13IRFU » Sat Aug 11, 2018 5:11 pm

Ross Adair back at Hinch this season?
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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby Russ » Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:55 am

UR13IRFU wrote:Ross Adair back at Hinch this season?
Big if true

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Re: UBL 2018/19

Postby thecrouch » Sun Aug 12, 2018 9:09 am

Columbo wrote:This year is an interesting one for the league, given the behind the scenes war that seems to be ongoing between the IRFU - which wants to transition to an all Ireland semi-pro competition sitting below the provinces - and the bigger clubs, particularly in Leinster, for whom the status quo is working fine, and for some of whom at least, any change will result in a loss (of prestige, players, money, members, spectators or all the above). As far as I can tell the Ulster clubs are sitting on the sidelines a bit at the minute.

Interesting one for the Ulster clubs as well, as after years of neglect and under-performance, we finally have a few clubs in 1B, and the aim this year seems to be to concentrate resources in these clubs to get them back to the top tier. The result is that this year's 1B is a bit of a cracker for Ulster clubs with Ulster derbies all over the place - kicking off on 6th Oct with Ballymena vs Malone...

1B: Ballynahinch, Ballymena, Armagh, Banbridge, Malone
2A: Queen's
2B: Belfast Harlequins, Rainey, Dungannon
2C: Bangor, City of Derry, Omagh

Other things to watch down the divisions: can QUB pull together a decent squad and get up the divisions? It's would be nice to see some big clubs come to play at such good facilities.. Have 'Quins stopped the rot? Very poor show from them over the last few years, they need to get their act in gear..

To anyone who has never bothered checking out the AIL, I can actually highly recommend it. If you're an Irish rugby anorak, it's a good way to see how academy / fringe squad players look up against the kind of gnarly campaigners you get in 1A and 1B, as well as against their peers from the other provincial academies, and these days the quality of matches is pretty reliably high (at least in 1A/B). You can even get a seat out of the elements at Ballymena, Queens and Quins (possibly elsewhere) and shout out to the Binmen who have done a cracking job on the bar :thumleft:


Can you explain this a bit more? What changes are they looking to make and why are the Leinster clubs against it?
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