10 May 2012

The 2012 Rugby League Ireland Season is set to kick off tonight with games being played in all three competing provinces as 21 teams aim to fill the two available All Ireland Final Spots. In total seven new clubs will take part in this weekend’ action.

In Ulster two of those teams will meet each other when the North Coast Boomers host the Antrim Eels. The Eels have recruited well in preparations of their first season with the signings of Ulster and Ireland Students Matty Hadden and Peter McWhirter. The third debutant in Ulster, the Maiden City Broncos, face a tough introduction to the league with a trip to the Fermanagh Redskins who just missed out on the provincial final last time around.

In Leinster another three teams will make their bow starting with Ashbourne who host the Ballyfermot Bears. Elsewhere Clondalkin Crusaders and Portarlington Wolverines face away trips to Tallaght Tigers and Athboy respectively.

Munster will see defending All Ireland Champions the Treaty City Titans host the West Coast Warriors tonight in the season-opener as they bid to retain their crown as kings of Munster and Ireland. Galway Tribesmen face an away fixture against the Cork Bulls to kick off their return to the Munster Division. Three teams will have to sit tight for one more week however, as the Ballynahinch Rabbitohs, Dublin City Exiles and Country Cowboys are all on their bye week in week one of the competition.

See www.rli.ie for full fixtures.