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Star and Tigers bid for glory on Cup weekend



Injury doubt: Star are sweating on CJ Fulton’s fitness

Injury doubt: Star are sweating on CJ Fulton’s fitness

�INPHO/Oisin Keniry

Injury doubt: Star are sweating on CJ Fulton’s fitness

Belfast Star and the University of Ulster Tigers are aiming to bring some silverware north of the border this weekend.

Star's Under-18 side take on Neptune tomorrow (1.30pm), while the Tigers women meet Waterford Wildcats on Sunday (11.30am) in the Under-20 decider.

The two finals are part of the annual Cup weekend in the National Basketball Arena, which is headlined by the Hula Hoops Pat Duffy National Cup showdown between DBS Éanna and Templeogue tomorrow night.

Star's Under-18s have showed tremendous resilience in making the decider for the second year running, though there is some concern over the fitness of their top performer, CJ Fulton.

He injured his right ankle last week and was unable to play for the senior side in the All Ireland Superleague victory over Maree.

Star's Under-18 coach Gerard Ryan said: "At this point I would say that CJ is 50-50. We'll leave it right up to game time.

"Whether he is playing or not, the rest of the lads know they will have to play some very tough defence to get the win.

"Neptune are the favourites but, then again, we were underdogs against Dundalk in the semi-finals and got the win. We will give it everything, that's for sure."

It's a big weekend for the UU Tigers as they seek to land their first major trophy since the Andersonstown club linked up with UU in the summer.

Just like Star, they will be seen as the underdogs but coach Deirdre Brennan will be quietly confident they can pull off an upset.

As for the men's senior final tomorrow night, a sold-out Arena can expect a real treat as Éanna and Templeogue battle for glory. Earlier in the season, the two sides served up a thriller in the league with the game going down to the wire.

Having won the Cup in 2016 and 2018, stalwarts Jason Killeen, Lorcan Murphy and Neil Randolph can lead Templeogue to more glory.

Belfast Telegraph