Buccaneers are home to in-form Dublin University, Trinity, when the Ulster Bank League Division 1B resumes on Saturday at Dubarry Park.
After losing their opening two matches, the Students have since won five to climb to fourth place in the table, while Buccs are one place behind. Trinity’s change of fortunes includes impressive wins over leaders St Mary’s College and Old Wesley. The latter victory was notable in that they held Old Wesley scoreless for a period while they had four yellow cards, including a spell when all four were in the sin bin at the same time.
With confidence high, Trinity ran Old Dolphin ragged last time out in Cork where they amassed a 44-3 scoreline. They raced into an early 17-0 lead there, but unlike the Pirates they maintained their tempo and concentration to win. A pacy side, Dublin University are willing to run from deep, so Buccs will need to maintain workrate and concentration from start to finish.
Conor Kearns and Paddy Lavelle are two very experienced players in a backline which includes two internationals, USA’s Tim Maupin and Germany’s Sebastian Fromm. Angus Lloyd and Brian Slater vie for the scrumhalf berth, while Jack McDermott is an able stand-off. Brian du Toit, Tom Ryan, and skipper Nick McCarthy comprise a mobile and efficient backrow; prop Tom Collis and lock Jack Burke are two quality forwards.
Buccs have been inconsistent in the early weeks of the campaign, so focus and application must be maintained during this encounter. A promising Buccs outfit have lost four matches to date, two by a solitary point and the other pair by just four points each, claiming crucial bonus points in these defeats.