Sligo RFC ready to welcome high-flying Lansdowne to Strandhill

Sligo are finalising preparations for one of the biggest games in the club’s history this weekend.

Leinster giants Lansdowne come to Hamilton Park in Strandhill for the semi-finals of the Bateman Cup.

Sligo qualified for the last four of the prestigious all-Ireland competition thanks to their famous defeat of Corinthians in the Connacht Senior Cup final before Christmas.

That was the Yeats men’s first win in that tournament in over a century.

Lansdowne are currently a staggering 13 points clear on top of Division 1A of the All-Ireland League, and claimed the Leinster Senior Cup title last month.

Sligo are also top of their division in the AIL, albeit four divisions below Saturday’s illustrious opponents.

The other Bateman Cup semi-final is also on Saturday, as reigning champions Cork Con make the long journey to take on Ulster champions City of Armagh.

Sligo native Niall Kenneally captained Cork Con to last year’s success, but looks set to miss out on this weekend’s game because of injury.

Saturday’s game in Strandhill kicks-off at the earlier time of 2pm, while the game in Armagh is underway 30 minutes later.

Former Sligo out-half and Ocean FM rugby analyst Ken O’Neill says Sligo will relish the challenge. He spoke to Darragh Cox…