AIL rugby

David McIlwaine
David McIlwaine

Ballymacarn Park won’t be a place for the faint hearted as Ballynahinch continue their survival bid in Division 1A with a clash against St Mary’s.

Derek Suffern’s side occupy the relegation play-off spot while basement club Garryowen have narrowed the gap to just two points but the Limerick club have played a game more.

St Mary’s are eight points in front of Hinch so a home win is imperative for the Co Down club.

Ulster prop Paddy McAllister and Ireland U20 lock John Donnan both remain side lined with injury.

Kyle McCall starts at loose head prop with former Ireland prop Chris Taylor on the tight side while Johnny Murphy is at hooker.

Kenny Morton and John Madden form the second row partnership, Neil Faloon, Paul Pritchard and Michael Graham are the backrow trio.

David McIlwaine may be made available depending on how much game time he gets for Ulster from the bench against the Dragons tonight.

Rodger McBurney returns and centre Stuart Morrow is back in Hinch colours after helping the Irish Club side to two wins.

Unfortunately the Ulster interest in Division 1B is focused on the bottom as Dungannon and Malone battle against the drop while Belfast Harlequins are comfortable in fifth, 13 points off the promotion leaders.

Malone have a five point buffer zone from the relegation places and welcome runaway leaders Terenure to Gibson Park.

Jacque Benade’s side are hoping to have Ulster lock Alan O’Connor available.

His season has been badly hampered with a shoulder injury which saw the second row go under the knife but due to a lack of rugby O’Connor is likely to be named among the replacements.

Ulster out have James McKinney is likely to started and will be partnered at half back by John Creighton who has recovered from the chest infection which ruled him out of the narrow defeat at UL Bo’s in the last AIL game.

Connor Joyce is also available, Malone lost 27-10 in Dublin earlier in the season against a Terenure side that have won all 12 AIL games, scored 339 points and secured six try scoring bonus points.

Dungannon are four points adrift at the foot of the table and they face the arduous trip to second place Corinthians.

Prop Adam Macklin and centre Stuart McCloskey are on the bench for Ulster, Ravens hooker Paul Jackson is available

Corinthians enjoyed a 24-16 win at Stevenson Park and have won 10 out of their 11 games but have only picked up one try scoring bonus point.

Quins travel to second from bottom Blackrock.

and a win for Adam Larkin’s side would do their two fellow Ulster clubs a favour.

Quins suffered a 24-7 win at Terenure last time out and are without Ricky Lutton as the prop starts for Ulster tonight.

Lock Neil McComb and scrum half Michael Heaney have been both released while utility back Mark Kettyle returns to the squad after taking time off to tie the knot.

Quins are looking to do the double over Rock after an 18-6 win at Deramore.