Dunbarton’s Myles Greenfield believes his team face a demanding 48 hours, starting on Thursday night with a Private Greens League Senior Cup semi final showdown against Larne at Randalstown.
Following hot on the heels of that test, comes an IBA Senior Cup quarter final meeting with struggling NIBA side Lurgan at Gilford on Saturday.
With their PGL Division One title hopes already flushed down the tubes - they have lost four from 10 starts - Dunbarton see the cups as a genuine chance of reaping silverware this season
They’ll certainly go into the Lurgan fixure as hot favourites to progress. The County Armagh boys have won only two games from 11 league games and currently sit bottom of the table.
But first up is a demanding outing against an impressive Larne side in the PGL Cup.
This will be Dunbarton’s biggest test of the campaign as they previously accounted for Comber, Ballywalter and Falls without losing a great deal of sweat. In contrast, Larne dumped out current holders Ballymena before ending the interest of Ards.
“It’s a really difficult game,” said Greenfield. “Larne have been one of the form teams in the league this season . . . they are still in with a shout of winning the title
“So, could be a defining couple of days for us. We’ll certainly be giving the Larne game our full focus. After that’ we’ll prepare for Lurgan.
“It’s been a long time since we last played them in the cup . . . maybe 20 years or so. “Even though they haven’t been have the best of season’s we’ll be taking nothing for granted.”
In, tonight’s other PGL Senior Cup semi final, Pickie and Willowffield go head to head at Fruithill Park, the home of Falls Bowls Club.
In fact, Pickie will be hoping to make it a double celebration as they will also contest the semi final of the PGL Junior Cup against Downpatrick at Belmont.
Meanwhile, Bangor will hope to enhance their proud IBA Cup tradition at the weekned when they roll out the welcome mat to CYM -- the only Bowling League of Ireland club remaining in the tournament.
Having already accounted for Dungannon, Letterkenny and Ballymoney in the previous rounds, the Seasiders are aware it could well be a banana skin fixture, even though they are hotly tipped to progress.
Bangor’s name has been scribbled on the trophy eight times since their breakthrough success back in 1935. But alarmingly their last cup victory was 14 years ago.
They enjoyed a relatively stress-free passage with wins against Ballycastle and Mossley in the early rounds before being taken to the wire by Portrush last time out.
Bangor will be at full strength and have been boosted by the return of Aaron Patterson, who was unavailable since the start of the season because of work commitments.
“Although we’ve home advantage, we’ll be taking nothing for granted,” said Bangor’s Robert Hastings. “We obviously don’t know an awful lot about CYM, but they beat a good Ballymoney side in the last round, so that tells us all we need to know.”
Thuresday: NIPGL Senior Cup semi finals: Dunbarton v Larne (at Old Blach); Willowfield v Pickie (at Falls).
PGL Junior Cup semi finals: Pickie B v Downpatrick (at Belmont); Old Bleach B v Falls B (at Ballymena)
Saturday: IBA Senior Cup quarter finals: Ballymena v Belmont, Whitehead v Coleraine, Bangor v CYM, Dunbarton v Lurgan.
IBA Junior Cup quarter finals: Brookgreen v Balmoral, Cookstown v Old Bleach, Pickie v Portrush, Whitehead v Ballymoney.
NI Private Greens League Division One: Willowfield v Ulster Transport, Ewarts v Old Bleach.
NIPGL Division Two: NICS v Cliftonville, Castleton v Comber, Mossley v Ballywalter, Falls v Forth River, Salisbury v Hilden.
NIPGL Division Three: Belmont B v Sainttfield, Ballymena B v Shafftesbury, Cavhill v PSNI, Gallaher v Shorts, North Belfast v Knock.
NIPGL Division Four: Dunbarton B v Larne B, Malone v Willowfield B, Ballymena C v Falls B.
NIPGL Division Five: Clifonville B v Mossley B, Comber B v Albert Foundry, Ulster Transport B v Ards B, Hilden B v Ewarts B, Shaftesbury B v Belmont D.
NIBA Division One: Lisnagarvey v Portadown, Dundonald v Carrick.
NIBA Division Two: Dromore v Dungannon, Donaghadee v Bessbrook, Sydenham v Castle.
NIBA Division Three: St Stephen’s v Ormeau, Cloughey v Markethill, Musgrave vv Clarendon, Carrick B v Lisnagarvey B, Rathfriland v Newtownabbey.
NIBA Division Four: Banbridbe B v BETS, Queen’s Island v Newcastle, Ulster Maple Leaf v Holywood, Finaghy v Annalong, Portadown B v North Down.
NIBA Division Five: Newry v Warrenpoint, 1st Ballymacarrett v Dromore B, Glengormley v Antrim, Castle B v Windsor, Lagan Valley v Lurgan B.
NIBA Division Six: Curran B v McQuiston Memorial, 9the Old Boys vv Divis B, Musgrave B v Rathfriland B, 58th Old Boys v Donaghadee B.
NI Provincial Bowling Associaiton Senior League: Limavady v City of Derry, Letterkenny v Portrush, Ballycastle v Portglenone.