Now that the regular season has come to an end and both the Men’s and Women’s Premier League titles have been settled with Killester and UL Huskies respectively, all attention and focus is now geared towards the end of season play-offs.
This weekend will kick off the competitions with the rest of the qualifying games taking place for the Champions Trophy and league cup in the Men’s Premier League and the league semi-finals and League Shield Semi-Final in the Women’s Premier League.
Following its introduction to the Men’s Premier League last year the Champions Trophy will return to had some additional excitement to an already exhilarating season.
This weekend two quarter-final games will be played as the men’s Division One winners, Maree take on Premier League side DCU Saints and the Men’s National Shield Champions, JM&L Auctioneers face off with Bord Gais Neptune.
The Men’s Premier League Winners, Killester, and National Cup Champions, C&S UCC Demons, both received a bye to the semi-final round.
The remaining two Premier League teams to enter the Champions Trophy were the next two best placed sides on the league table.
Meanwhile in the League Cup, the next four best placed Men’s Division One sides and Men’s Premier League sides will battle it out for the chance to claim some silverware during their 2013/2014 campaign.
This competition pits Men’s Division One sides against Premier League teams while giving the division one clubs home advantage in the hope of creating more excitement and anticipation around the competition.
The quarter-finals will see Team Garvey’s St. Mary’s take on UL Eagles, Swords Thunder face off with UCD Marian while Team Left Bank Kilkenny square off to Belfast Star and C&S Demons battle it out with Dublin Inter.
In the Women’s Premier League a gutsy Killester will take on the regular season winners UL Huskies, while DCU Mercy are pitted against the Women’s National Cup champions, Team Montenotte Hotel Cork as the battle to the league final continues.
Elsewhere, the semi-final of the Women’s Premier League Shield will take place between bottom of the table sides, Liffey Celtics and Meteors. The winner of that game will go on to play Ulster Rockets in the final.
The last competition of the weekend will be the second semi-final of the Women’s Division One when Team Tom McCarthy’s St. Mary’s take on Tralee Imperials, the winner of that game will take on Portlaoise Panthers.