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While Rainey Old Boys can feel well satisfied with their season to date, they know that a very demanding period lies ahead.  Three AIL fixtures, followed by two important SONI Ulster Premiership ties before Christmas will fully test them.

 

In order to be competitive in 2A, they had to replace several players with similar ability and add strength in depth to the squad.  This they managed to do, with the new faces settling in well and making an early impression.  The unexpected availability of lineout star Ronan McCusker has been a huge bonus and the form of young back-row Jack Bresland a real revelation.  If they can avoid long-term injuries, this Rainey squad is capable of holding its own in any company.

On Saturday, Rainey Old Boys welcome leading Junior club Dromore to Hatrick Park for a friendly run out before the competitive business kicks off a week later.  After a struggle to stay in the top tier, Dromore bounced back well to enjoy better fortunes last season.  They have had a steady stream of young players coming through from their feeder school and now that they have been admitted to Schools Cup level, these young prospects can only get better.  The Barban Hill side have always been formidable opponents, even though there are several other clubs in close proximity on the look out for players with clear potential.  KO is early at 1:00pm.

After the mid-season break, the AIL resumes on Saturday with the fixtures coming in the reverse order.  In Division 2B, Barnhall lead the way by five points from Greystones who travel to Barnhall this weekend.  A home win would put the Kildare side well on the way to the title.

 

A dreadful start to the campaign against the fancied teams left Rainey Old Boys bottom of the table after Week 4.  They gradually picked up to move up the table without ever impressing, but a great result in Cork against Sunday's Well gave them the confidence and belief to extend their winning run at home to Dungannon.  While they have had to call on more than forty players, they played very well at The Palace Grounds, scoring three great tries against a very good side two tiers above them.