This is the last round of fixtures in the Women’s AIL before the Christmas break. Blackrock sit this one out. 

15:30 Cooke v Railway Union Shawsbridge
17:00 St. Mary’s College v Galwegians Templeville
17:00 U.L. Bohemian v Old Belvedere 4G UL Sports

Cooke v Railway Union

Last Five Form
Cooke (5) NF WB WB L L 50%
Railway Union (2) W WB WB LB LB 64%

Railway Union travel to Belfast this week to take on Cooke. Both sides will be looking to get back to winning ways after losing both their back to back games in the two previous rounds.

Railway will be out to make a statement this weekend, and will be gunning to be back on top of the league before the Christmas break. The Dublin side have one of the most exciting attacks in the league with skilful backs and forwards working throughout the park, they will need to get this going again this weekend to get over the try line. Railway will have both 7s and 15s internationals scattered throughout their squad but will be looking to consistent top performers Susan Vaughan, Emma Taylor and Claire Keohan to set the benchmark this weekend.

Cooke will be disappointed with their performances in their previous two games. The Belfast side will be looking to show the form they did against UL Boh’s and Galwegians previously. They will be looking to their pack, particularly their hard working second row Naomi McCullagh and Sorcha Mac Laimhim, to give them a strong platform to attack from. Their young but experienced back line has showed some great attack this season, with Eliza Downey and Kelly McCormill crossing the try line numerous times already.

The last time these two met this season, Railway came away with the win after a hard fought match. We are going to have to predict the same for this round, Railway to win, but we are expecting Cooke to push them.

St Mary’s College v Galwegians

Last Five Form
St Mary’s College (7) L NF PP L WOL -10%
Galwegians (6) LB W L NF NF 40%

Galwegians are finally back in action this weekend after nearly a months break. The Westerners will have to be match ready when they return to action this weekend. Wegians will look to their hard working international forwards Laura Feely and Nichola Fryday to get them go forward momentum, before they release their skilful back line. Denise Redmond will also be looking forward to getting back on the scoreboard for her team this weekend.

St Mary’s had to give a walk over to UL Boh’s in the last round due to injuries, however we are sure the Dublin side will be looking forward to getting back into action this weekend. Mary’s have shown strong physical performances this season, with Aoife Moore leading by example, and will be looking for more of the same from their home game against UL Bohs two weeks ago. 

Mary’s have had to work hard this season to get over the try line and will be aiming to get more points on the board in every game, however we are going to have to back the visitors for this game. Galwegians will be eager to get back out there to make a statement to the teams that have climbed above them during their break.

UL Bohemian v Old Belvedere

Last Five Form
U.L. Bohemian (1) WB LBB L WB WOW 68%
Old Belvedere (3) WB LB NF W W 70%

Old Belvedere travel to Limerick to take on top of the table UL Bohemian. Belvo will be bringing all the momentum with them after winning their Dublin derby’s against Railway in the last two rounds. The D4 Aritros have have got back to their Aristocratic best and are once again a force to be reckoned with. They will be gunning to show off their strong attack and unbreachable defence again this round. Their strong centre partnership of Sene Naoupu and Ailbhe Dowling will get them go forward ball, and back row convert Claire McLaughlin and dynamic prop Linda Djoungang will be hardworking throughout the game.

UL Bohemians will be looking forward to playing against their title rivals. The Limerick side will be back to full strength with the inclusion of their Ireland internationals apart from the injured Ciara Griffin. UL’s attack has been lead well by Niamh Briggs and with the inclusion of Nichole Cronin and Eimear Considine, they will provide numerous issues for the Belvo defence. The pack will be looking to show their power and skill in the set piece, with the experienced Fiona Hayes and Chloe Pearse bossing their team about.

This will likely be the game of the round, with both teams battling for top of the table before Christmas. Although it is hard to bet against the current title holders, we are again going to have to back a win for the away team. Belvo have shown great composure in their last games, and will be at an advantage having played two hard games in the last two weeks.

#SUFTUM