Heineken Junior Plate Final 2014- Connemara v Loughrea

Sunady 30th March, 1pm, Sportsground

The traditional curtain raiser to the Heineken Junior Cup final, the Plate is no less important. Connemara and Loughrea will be looking for the perfect way to end seasons that perhaps didn’t go their way.

Connemara in particular were probably hoping for a better season after being relegated from the Ulster Bank League, and while they ultimately finished 5th, they were hanging perilously close to a relegation spot for the majority of the season. Such is the nature of a final though, were they to win on Sunday, the season would go down as a success in history. After falling to a narrow loss to OLBC in the cup, they overcame the challenges of Creggs, Corrib, and Ballina to reach the final.

Conversely, Loughrea were possibly hoping for a promotion spot from J1B but will have to settle for a tilt at it again. Finishing 3rd behind cup finalists Galwegians and Ballyhaunis saw their chances disappear, but maybe a win here could set them up for a stronger push next season. Loughrea actually got their Junior Cup campaign off to a flier, beating Carrick 50-0 in the preliminary round, before a narrow 10-3 loss to J1A side Monivea. They achieved a place in the final by first overcoming Ballinrobea and then just beating Buccaneers in a tense semi final last Sunday.

Both teams could use a win to bring some positivity to their clubs, and will hope to enter next season in a winning state of mind. This will be one not to miss.


GALLERY: Athlone Community College v St Josephs College (The Bish)