Blow for Pegasus as striker Robyn puts hockey on hold
Robyn Chambers has sensationally quit Pegasus after playing only six competitive matches since re-joining the EY Irish Hockey League club from Ulster Elks in the summer.
The striker, who recently made her senior international debut for Ireland against Belgium, says she is taking a break from hockey to concentrate on her work commitments in a beauty salon in Cookstown.
However, if and when she decides to end her self-imposed exile, it's certain she will be a target for several clubs.
Chambers, who learned her hockey at Rainey Endowed school in Magherafelt, began her club career with Ballymoney before moving to the Elks after her first spell with Pegasus.
She played representative hockey for Ulster and Ireland at Under-21 level before stepping up to the senior international squad, although she missed the cut when a 26-strong training panel was announced last week.
Pegasus, meanwhile, play their first game of the season without Chambers when they meet Railway in Dublin on Saturday.
Last season's runners-up currently lie in seventh place in the standings after a winless run stretching back four matches, so they will be anxious to get back on track against Railway.
Pegasus captain Alex Speers formerly played for the Dublin side before moving back home two years ago.
The former Ireland skipper said: "It's a huge game for us and it's going to be really tough because they have a talented mix of youth and experience.
"We lost to them home and away last season, although we did manage to beat them in the semi-finals of the play-offs."
Ards are the highest placed Ulster team and they will be hoping to consolidate fourth place when they meet Cork Harlequins at Londonderry Park.
They welcome back Kerri McDonald, who missed last Saturday's win over Pembroke due to a prior commitment, and the experienced Katy Bennett.
The Elks and Belfast Harlequins are just three points better off than basement side Pembroke and it's hard to see either of the Ulster teams achieving a positive result on Saturday against UCD and Loreto respectively.
Meanwhile, the big game in the Ulster Premier League is the meeting of champions and current leaders Lurgan and Queen's which is a dress rehearsal for next month's Denman Ulster Shield final.
WOMEN’S SENIOR FIXTURES
FRIDAY: Senior One: Knock v CI Ladies (Strathearn, 8.20pm)
SATURDAY: IHL: Ards v Cork H’quins (Londonderry Park, 2.30pm); Belfast H’quins v UCD (Deramore, 4pm); Railway v Pegasus (Dublin, 2.15pm); Ulster Elks v Loreto (UUJ, 2.30pm); Pembroke v Monkstown (4pm)
Ulster Premier League: Ballymoney v North Down (Joey Dunlop LC, 2.30pm); Lurgan v Queen’s (Lurgan JHS, 2.30pm); Randalstown v Banbridge (Antrim, 1pm)
Senior One: Cookstown v Victorians (2.30pm); Ballyclare v Larne (2.30pm)