This season’s All Ireland League fixtures list has just been unveiled and Buccaneers open their AIL campaign with a tasty home fixture against Naas on October 6th. Their first away game follows on the 13th with a first ever match against Banbridge, the Co. Down club that has moved up the divisions in recent seasons.
Buccs face five Ulster clubs this season - Banbridge, Ballynahinch, City of Armagh, Malone and Ballymena. The remaining quartet of clubs in Division 1B are from Leinster - Naas, plus a trio of Dublin sides Old Belvedere, Old Wesley and St. Mary’s College. 1B looks like being as competitive as ever but the Pirates have retained virtually all last season’s playing squad whilst adding a number of acquisitions as well a new head coach in Peter O’Donnell. Consequently, the midlanders believe they can be in the hunt for promotion but will need to hit the ground running. Training continues primarily on Tuesdays and Thursdays in Dubarry Park when all players should be ready to go on the paddock at 7 p.m. New players always welcome to come along.
In the meantime, Buccaneers have four Connacht Senior League outings prior to the AIL. They commence the defence of this title away to Ballina on August 25th. This will be a stern test as the north-westerners went through last season unbeaten in Connacht and then winning all three round robin matches to qualify for the AIL for the first time.