Galwegians are expected to be back in action on Sunday to contest their AIB Cup quarter-final that was postponed last Saturday.
The Galwegians v Dolphin fixture at Musgrave Park (2pm ) is one of two remaining quarter-finals to be decided which the IRFU has refixed for this weekend (weather dependent ). The winners of this fixture will enjoy a home quarter-final over Garryowen in the semi-finals, while Ballymena will meet the winners of the Cork Constitution v Queen’s University match.
This will be a tough fixture for Galwegians who must travel to Cork to face division 1A side. Dolphin have posted some notable victories this season with three opening league wins before falling to unbeaten St Mary’s. Cork Con, Clontarf, and Shannon have all fallen to this in-form side, while in the cup Dolphin have enjoyed, as expected, comfortable victories over Barnhall and Belfast Harlequins.
Galwegians, however, will have been boosted by their recent division 1B victory over the previously unbeaten leaders Old Belvedere. That came after a four-try victory over division 2 side UCD in the AIB Cup round, ensuring Galwegians have gained some momentum in putting two wins together. John Cleary was a key figure in that win over Old Belvedere, posting two tries, while the pack continues to perform. The backrow will need to be at its best against James Coughlan and Barry O'Mahony, who are strong ball carriers,. In team captain Barry Keeshan, Dolphin boast an outhalf of goalkicking prowess who will punish any mistakes with his goalkicking. Given the current weather conditions, this game could well come down to the respective packs, and while Galwegians would be confident up front, this year they have enjoyed playing more expansive rugby which suits the likes of Cleary, Mark Butler, and Liam Bibo. Tiernan O’Halloran will miss Sunday’s fixture as he is named in the Irish u-19 team that plays their Australian counterparts. However contracted players available include MIchael Swift, Ronan Loughney, Liam Bibo, and Kieran Campbell.
Galwegians’ squad: Forwards, Ja Naughton, Jamie Stephens, Ronan Dillon, Ronan Loughney, Conor Muldoon, Ross Fitzgerald, Liam Scahill, Brian McClearn, Michael Swift, Derek Boyd, Joe Moran, Ambrose Conboy, Ivan Muldoon. Backs, Mark Butler, John Cleary, Kieran Campbell, Ronan Dillon, Ross Shaughnessy, Dave Clarke, Aifai Tuiloma, Barry Lee, Liam Bibo.