Old Bleach have sights on success again in Senior Cup
Old Bleach's Michael Nutt admits his team will be taking nothing for granted in the opening game of their IBA Senior Cup defence against Clarendon at Randalstown today.
The PGL boys paraded the famous old trophy for the first time in the club's history last year after an epic victory over Dunbarton.
They are hot favourites to punch their ticket to round two against the NIBA Division One side, but Nutt knows the cup throws up banana skin fixtures.
"We've been victims of shock early round results on a few occasions, so we'll not be dropping our guard," said Nutt, the Ireland Under-25 team boss.
"We enjoyed our run in the tournament last season and it was great to get our hands on the trophy, so we don't want to surrender it cheaply."
The Old Bleach club are still coming to terms with the death of stalwart Bryan Magrath, who passed away recently following a long battle with illness.
"Bryan is a massive loss, not only to the club, but to the PGL," added Nutt.
"He put so much work into the game in general at every level. He was a popular figure."
Having their opening match of the league campaign against Dunbarton postponed as a mark of respect, Old Bleach got their season under way last week by taking six points from their visit to Ulster Transport.
The Kirkwood brothers, Stephen and Robert, who joined Old Bleach from Hilden last season, have their father Maurice on board this term. He made his debut last weekend at Jordanstown.
Irish Bowling Association Senior Cup, first round: Aer Lingus v Dun Laogharie, Ballycastle v Bangor, Belmont v NICS, City of Derry v Cavehill, Coleraine v Forth River, Cookstown v Castle, Crumlin v Limavady, Divis v Falls, Dromore v Kenilworth, Dungannon v CYM, Ewarts v Pickie, Larne v Donaghadee, Leinster v Banbridge, Mossley v Portglenone, Old Bleach v Clarendon, Portadown v Blackrock, Portrush v Ards, St James's Gate v Railway Union, Ulster Transport v Lisnagarvey, Whitehead v Meath, Willowfield v Ballymena.
Irish Bowling Association Junior Cup, first round: Ballycastle v Kenilworth, Ballymena C v Willowfield, Carrick v Belmont C, Castle v Pickie, Cavehill v Falls, City of Derry v Ewarts, Coleraine v Banbridge, Comber v Portadown, Cookstown v Ards, Donaghadee v Dromore, Dunbarton v Crumlin, Hilden v Musgrave, Kilrea v St James's Gate, Letterkenny v Belmont D, Portrush v CYM, Ulster Transport v Portstewart, Westmanstown v Ballymoney, Whitehead v Larne.