Ireland fear injured Megan Frazer will miss World bid
Megan Frazer is facing a race against the clock to be fit for Ireland's World League 3 campaign in the summer as a serious knee injury is taking longer than expected to heal.
The Irish captain ruptured her cruciate and medial ligaments while training with Mannheimer in Germany in October.
Ireland are likely to be competing in the second of two World League 3 events in South Africa in July but now that target could be beyond her reach.
National coach Graham Shaw could certainly do with the immensely talented Frazer for what is the final stage of the qualifying process for the 2018 World Cup.
"My recovery has been a bit slower than expected and it's been a slow process in regards to seeing improvement," Frazer explained.
"I still haven't got full extension of the knee which means I still can't walk properly let alone run, so it has been very frustrating.
"I may have to get a second MRI scan to see if something else is holding me back and, in the meantime, I have been working hard at my rehab at the Northern Ireland Sports Institute."
While back home, Frazer has been helping out on the coaching front with Ulster Elks, whom she left to play in Germany.
However, while the Jordanstown team's performances have improved, they remain rooted to the bottom of the IHL table with time running out and a return to the Ulster Premier League looks increasingly likely.
On Saturday, the Elks look to have a mission impossible against reigning champions Hermes-Monkstown followed by a tough game away to Loreto.
However, they will be pinning their hopes on still being in contention for ninth place when they face fellow strugglers Pembroke in the last game of the regulation season.
Pembroke are currently one point ahead, so the Elks will be hoping their Ulster rivals Ards don't slip up when they play the Leinster side on Saturday.
Like Ards, Pegasus are five points off the play-offs going into Sunday's game with Belfast Harlequins at Upper Malone.
In the Ulster Premier League, meanwhile, it is unlikely there will be any change at the top as leaders Ballymoney will be expected to beat Lisnagarvey at Comber Road.
Champions Lurgan, who are two points behind but have a game in hand, should be too strong for North Down.
There's one important game in Senior One tonight as promotion-chasing Rainey travel to Ballymena.