Irish Hockey League finals preview

HOCKEY: Electric Ireland Irish Hockey League & Men’s Irish Hockey League FINALS WEEKEND
Saturday 5th and Sunday 6th May 2012 Lisnagarvey Hockey Clubs

It’s that time of the year again when The Electric Ireland and Men’s Irish Hockey League Finals take centre stage. Lisnagarvey are once again hosting the finals after a terrific success hosting the finals last year. This year we have seen some top quality hockey in both men’s and women’s Irish Hockey League resulting in four highly anticipated semi finals.

Firstly looking to The Electric Ireland Women’s Irish Hockey League semi finals. The first semi final on the Saturday between Hermes and Railway Union has a start time of 10:30 is an intriguing match to call. Hermes comes into the semi final knowing they are the only team holding a 100% clean record in IHL 2012. Their six straight wins catapulted them to the top of Pool A and thus earning them a semi final spot. Hermes will hope to welcome back Audrey O’Flynn from her six week absence with a broken jaw which she picked up while playing for Ireland in the Olympic qualifiers in March. Railway Union earned their place in the semi finals by finishing second in Pool B with three wins and two draws. Railway Union will be looking to settle old scores as they fell at this stage last year to none other then Hermes on a score line of Hermes 3 Railway Union 1.
The second semi final is between Loreto and Pegasus which has a start time of 12:30. Loreto qualified for the semi finals by clinching top spot in Pool B by winning three and drawing two of their five games. Standing in their way of a final spot are reigning Electric Ireland IHL champions Pegasus who no doubt will be full of confidence having recently been crowned European Champions. Suzanne Beaney of Pegasus will hope to add to her tally of five goals and consolidate her place at the top of the scoring charts. A fascinating game awaits.

Over to the Men’s Semi final draw. First up at 13:15 is YMCA against Monkstown. YMCA qualified top of Pool B with wins over Annadale, Pembroke Wanderers and Three Rock Rovers. YM will hope to be back to full strength having been blighted by injury over the past few months. Monkstown made the semi finals having finished runners up in Pool A with three wins a draw. As with YM Monkstown have had a minor injury crisis over the past few weeks but will hope to have the majority of their internationals to call upon.

The second semi final between Cookstown and Lisnagarvey has a 15:30 hit off. Cookstown current Ulster premier league champions qualified for the semi finals by finishing top of Pool A winning three and drawing two. Fresh from starring for Ireland in the Olympic qualifiers Ian Sloan is vying for top goalscorer along with Greg Allen. Lisnagarvey finished second in pool B with wins over YMCA, Cork C of I, Annadale and Three Rock Rovers and a draw with Pembroke Wanderers. Their attack will be led by current Irish international Timmy Cockram who along with Cookstown’s Ian Sloan and Greg Allen is on the verge of overall top goalscorer on 4 with the leaders Jane Kane from Glenanne and William Robinson Instonians on 5.

Saturday 5th May
Electric Ireland Women’s IHL Semi Finals
Hermes v Railway Union 10:30
Loreto v Pegasus 12:30

Men’s IHL Semi Finals
YMCA v Monkstown 13:15
Cookstown v Lisnagarvey 15:30

Sunday 6th May
Electric Ireland Women’s IHL final 13:30
Men’s IHL final 16:00
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