Junior cup kicks off for lower level sides this weekend

The premier cup competition for junior rugby sides in Connacht kicks off this evening, with Claremorris the first Mayo side into the competition taking on Tuam in north Galway at 8pm. The south Mayo team who are operating in Junior 1C this year will face a tough test against the north Galway side who are sitting in third place in the table in the division above them in the league with eight wins from their 10 games.

On Sunday Ballinrobe, who warmed up with a 30-10 win over the aforementioned Claremorris in the league last weekend, will take to the road and head to Dumore for a place in the next round, where all the big boys enter the competition. Theses two sides have been battling it out at the top of Division 1C all year and when they met in the league their most recent contest ended in a 13-13 draw in Ballinrobe, while Ballinrobe had 19-7 win in their last meeting in Dunmore. If Ballinrobe get over Dumore the prize for them is an away trip to last year's cup winners Westport in Carrowholly the following weekend.

Back at the ranch

In the league last weekend in the top division, Ballina's winning run came to an end when they were turned over 10-8 by Monivea away from home, a win in that game would have seen Ballina push right up to the top of the table, but they remain three points behind league leaders Westport for now. Westport were not in league action last weekend but they did have a 10-8 win over Ballinasloe in the Cawley Cup to book their place in the final of that competition. This weekend the Bulls will be heading east to take on Buccaneers, while Ballina will be looking to get back to winning ways when they take on Connemara at home in Heffernan Park.

In the division below there was a double loss for the Mayo sides, with both Castlebar and Ballyhaunis going down to defeats last Friday night. Ballyhaunis were beaten 31-7 by NUIG at home, while Castlebar lost 17-10 to table toppers Creggs on the road. This weekend both sides have road games on Sunday, with Castlebar away to Sligo in Hamilton Park, while Loughrea will host Ballyhaunis.

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