Malone RFC Women’s team have wrapped up the Ulster Rugby Women’s Championship Division 1 a couple of games early thanks to their 34 – 7 win over, their nearest rivals, Ballynahinch RFC Women on Sunday.
The match completed Ballynahinch’s season but Malone who have won 8 from 8 so far have an unassailable lead with two matches still to play. The big question is, will the Gibson Park outfit complete the season unbeaten?
In all likelihood they will, as the team will be keen to take an unblemished record into the play offs for promotion to the All Ireland League where they will face the winners from the other provinces Provincial Leagues to win that coveted place in the AIL.
As for their possible opponents in the play offs only Ballincollig in the Munster League are equally unbeaten with 9 wins from 9 at the time of writing. There is recent history between Malone and Ballincollig with the Munster outfit winning a recent all Ireland Cup encounter, but Malone weren’t that far off the pace.
The Connacht challenger is likely to come from NUIG Women (5 wins from 6) or Castlebar Women (4 from 6) who lie first and second in the Connacht League. However there is a top four play off in this league so, at the moment, Tuam Women and Buccaneers Women are still in the hunt.
However, the biggest challenge is likely to come from the St Marys in the Leinster League who are home and hosed with one round of fixtures still to be completed. the Leinster side will be keen to regain the AIL spot that they lost last season.