Belfast Royal Academy, with their all round strength and open style of rugby, will start slight favourites in the Northern Bank Schools' Cup semi-final against Wallace High at Ravenhill this afternoon (2.30).
Academy have had a difficult journey to the last four with a |8-0 win over Dalriada in the quarter-final but they showed in their 18-16 replay win against RBAI that, not only are their backs formidable, but their pack can match most opposition that comes their way.
Josh Henderson, Callum Leckey, Ryan Clarke and Norman Sinclair have all put in excellent forward performances and a lot will be expected of them today.
In the backs they have match winners in half-backs Conor Spence and Stuart Olding whose superb control had a big influence in the Inst tie.
Chris McCarey, the Academy coach is expecting a tight game today.
“ If the conditions are still and dry and we are allowed to fully utilise our backs then I feel we have the ability to win, assuming we play to our best,” he said.
Wallace have had a slightly easier trip to the semi-final as, after defeating Omagh Academy 24-0, they then eliminated Regent House 6-0 in a much closer encounter.
They have had the advantage of home games but nevertheless they are a well drilled team.
BRA: J Buchanan, M Robinson, D Cartmill, M Glover, E Devlin, S Olding, C Spence, D McCallum, N Sinclair, A Martin, N O'Neill, C Leckey, T Vincent, R Clarke, J Henderson
Replacements: J Thompson, G Redmond, A McCormick, M Nicholl, J Simpson, A Mayne, A McClements.
Wallace High: A Hanley, J Heatley, D Scott, A Gilmore, C Matthews, M Godfrey, A McCollum, C Spence, C Taylor, K McCall, D Henry, S Evans, C Munn, R Stewart, J Clements. Replacements: R Irwin, C Hodgkinson, J McMullan, M Gilkinson, N Reid, J Connan, C Saunders
Referee: R Kerr