New Season Gets Underway
In Division One South Ramsey A start the defence of their title with a visit to Crosby to take on the newly promoted Marown B, who will be looking to make a strong start to the season as they have several players who will be playing in the top tier for the first time. I am confident enough to predict that Marown B will retain their top flight status this season.
Marown A have one addition to their team this season with the addition of Paul Kelly from Douglas, with the Crosby men looking to close the gap to the top and build on last season’s Rayner Shield success, as they start with a visit to take on South Ramsey B.
South Ramsey will have their work cut out to once again prove they have the hunger to win the league for only the third time in their history.
Onchan A will be looking to improve on last season’s third place finish, they begin their season with the visit of Douglas A to Onchan Park.
Peel A have strengthened with the return of Tommy McMeiken. I can definitely see Peel building on last season’s sixth place finish and making the top four, whilst also having the firepower to damage the top three on their own turf.
Douglas B will have a fight on their hands to stay in the top tier this season, having narrowly avoided relegation in 2017. The Villa men commence their season with the visit of North Ramsey A.
Port St Mary A start their campaign with the visit of local rivals Port Erin A, who will hoping to make a better start to the season than they did in 2017, to avoid getting dragged into a relegation fight for another year.
In Division Two there are three A Teams sitting outside the top tier, Ballaugh who got relegated last season, Finch Hill and Nobles who were both relegated in 2016. Out of these Ballaugh are best placed to make an immediate return to Division One, with Nobles having the potential to do so if they field their strongest eight players in their A Team.
Also looking to go straight back up are Castletown B, whilst Onchan B finished runners up last season they will be keen to build on last season’s position.
At the other end of the table Peel C will be hoping to stay up after winning Division Three last season.
In Division Three Marown C now have the benefit of two years league experience behind them and they will be confident of building on their third place finish in 2017.
Douglas D look to have retained their fourth team for another season to give their new players the opportunity to gain vital league experience and improve on last season’s points total.
Finally I hope you have all wintered well and wish everyone an enjoyable season.
World Club Championships
Following their success in retaining the League last season, South Ramsey A have the opportunity to compete in the World Club Championships at Fox Lane, Leyland on Sunday April 8th where they take on Holme (Cumbria).
The competition is played in a group of four teams on a straight knockout basis. The other two teams in the group are Wharton Cons (Cheshire) taking on Eccleston (Merseyside). The winners from each game in the group then play off to qualify for the finals day on Sunday April 22nd.