Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 19 April 2014

Rugby: Clogher face a tough hurdle

TOWNS' CUP

TOMORROW'S first round of the Smithwick's Towns Cup has thrown up a number of intriguing ties.

TOMORROW'S first round of the Smithwick's Towns Cup has thrown up a number of intriguing ties.

In this, the 22nd year that Smithwick's have been associated with the competition, the holders, Dungannon, clash with near neighbours, Clogher Valley, in a match they should win fairly comfortably. Clogher Valley have not exactly been making the headlines this season going by their own high standards, and they are going to struggle against a side that is awash with experience.

Last year's beaten finalists Coleraine would need to guard against complacency when they travel to face Omagh but they will go into the game as favourites.

The tie of the round is at Barban Hill where Dromore face a high-flying Ballymena who will have their eyes already on a Cup double. After their impressive Junior Cup final triumph against Armagh, Ballymena should start as favourites to go through right to the death.

The pick of the other first round ties are Lurgan v Larne and Ballymoney v Magherafelt.

Full first round line-up: Ballynahinch v Bangor; Holywood v Derry; Omagh v Coleraine; Virginia v Donaghadee; Limavady v Armagh; Antrim v Randalstown; Dromore v Ballymena; Ballyclare v Ards; Lurgan v Larne; Banbridge v Cavan; Carrick v Cookstown; Newry v Lisburn; Clogher Valley v Dungannon; Portadown v Enniskillen and Ballymoney v Magherafelt. Monaghan received a bye in the first round.

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