Another good weekend for the 12 Ulster UBL teams last week. 5/6 won away from home and 3/6 won at home. Eight of the twelve teams picked up league points. After three rounds: City of Armagh are top of Div 2A with newly promoted Omagh top of Div 2C. Teams including Banbridge and Ballynahinch are in top four in Div 1B. Malone and Queens Uni top four Div 2A. Rainey OB top four in Div 2B. Bangor are 5th in Div 2C.
Teams needing to pick up league points are Ballymena, Dungannon, City of Derry and Belfast Harlequins. The games this week will complete the first block of four matches in the UBL with the teams having a three week break before league action resumes on the 28th October.
For the Ulster teams it is building on the success achieved by Banbridge, Armagh and Rainey last season in securing promotion along with Omagh who returned to the UBL via the playoffs.
The ambition for teams is to win a minimum of 3/4 games to put yourself in contention for promotion and the playoffs at the end of the season. With two further blocks of three games each, the teams will play 10 matches before having a Xmas break.
Spectators will not have been disappointed by the quality of the rugby on display in the Ulster Bank league this season. Banbridge in their last two games at Rifle Park have scored 9 tries in their 31 – 31 draw with UCC and a 42 – 35 win over Naas. Former Ulster and Connacht scrum half Ian Porter has contributed 43 points in his teams opening three matches. Armagh out half Cormac Fox has scored 41 pts for his team in their first three matches. Ulster out half Jonny McPhillips has scored 25 pts for his club Ballynahinch in their last two matches. City of Derry out half Neil Burns has scored 27 points in his last two games. Malone winger Rory Campbell has contributed 51 points in his last three matches. Omagh out half Scott Elliott has scored 25 points in three games. Ritchie McMaster Queens Uni has scored 32 points in three games. Rainey out half Andrew Magrath 29 points in three matches.
Kukri Ulster rugby championship teams: Enniskillen, Coleraine, Portadown and Ballymoney have progressed to the quarter finals of the Millar McCall Wylie Junior Cup with Div 1 league one contenders Ballyclare and Instonians being knocked out by Armagh and current holders Ballynahinch seconds. Portadown progressed at the expense of Ards with Ballymoney defeating Limavady. Malone seconds and Banbridge seconds completed the draw after defeating Grosvenor and Cooke.
The draw for the Quarter Finals to be played on 21st October 2017 is:
Armagh seconds v Coleraine
Portadown v Malone seconds
Ballymoney v Banbridge seconds
Ballynahinch seconds v Enniskillen.
Will we see four UBL club second xv sides progressing to the semi final draw with the UBL clubs 1st xv teams having a weekend off on the 21st October.
It is a difficult period for the Ulster rugby championship teams with league, Junior Cup and the All Ireland Junior Cup 1st Rd matches due to be played on the 28th October. Maybe a weekend off on the 21st October for Ballyclare and Instonians is to be welcomed before they play their 1st Rd All Ireland Junior Cup matches. For the two other Ulster representatives in in the AIL Junior Cup; Portadown and Enniskillen’ they will have to contend with two difficult Junior Cup quarter finals the week before the 1st Rd of the AIL Junior Cup. Being successful in Ulster comes at a price for the Ulster championship clubs. Both Bangor and Instonians have experienced the highs and lows of competing in several tournaments prior to Xmas in recent seasons.
This weekend teams return to competitive action in the league.
In Div 1 Ballyclare and Instonians remain the pacesetters with these two teams due to meet at Shawsbridge on the 4th November. Can any of the chasing pack make up ground on these two teams. Both Portadown and Enniskillen qualified for the All Ireland Cup after finishing 4th and 5th last season. These two teams are currently placed 10th and 8th in the league. Portadown are still seeking their first league win after four defeats and Enniskillen have won one from three. Five points separate the teams in 3rd to 8th place. Clogher Valley who struggled to retain their place in Div 1 last season find themselves alongside Portadown in 9th and 10th place with both teams looking their first league win.
In Div 2 Grosvenor remain firm favourites for promotion after narrowly missing out last season. They have newly promoted Ballymoney ‘hot on their heels’ with Randalstown in 3rd place. These three teams have yet to taste defeat in the league with Randalstown and Ballymoney meeting at ‘Nelisbrook’ this weekend. Lisburn, Limavady and UUC occupy the bottom three places with these three teams looking their first league win. Limavady and UUC meet at the ‘John Hunter Grounds’ on Saturday.
In Div 3 we have five points separating the top five teams with Monaghan having a game in hand. Lurgan are the strong favourites with resurgent Donaghadee, Strabane, Virginia and Monaghan hoping to have a say in the outcome of the league. Normally this league is dominated by one or two teams. This year it looks like being a much more competitive league. It is good to see teams like Monaghan and Virginia being involved. Virginia have been successful at under age rugby and will look to transfer that success into their adults teams. This weekend Donaghadee meet Strabane at ‘Donaldson Park’ with Monaghan hosting Virginia.
Current Dungannon hooker Malcolm Allister has been appointed as the CCRO for County Monaghan by the Ulster Branch. He is a former captain of Monaghan 1st xv. Malcolm’s role will be to promote the game in schools and Youth groups throughout the county. We wish him well. Another interesting piece of news is that Paul Bowe father of Ulster star Tommy Bowe is the President at the Monaghan club this season.
ULSTER BANK ALL IRELAND LEAGUE: ROUND 4
UCD (5) v St Mary’s College (8)
Clontarf (6) v Buccaneers (9)
Terenure College (1) v Garryowen )(3)
Young Munster (7) v Dublin Uni (10)
Lansdowne (2) v Cork Constitution (4)
Ballymena (8) v Banbridge (3). Played Friday 6.10.17. Kick off 7.30PM
Old Belvedere (5) v Old Wesley (10)
Ballynahinch (4) v UL Bohemians (6)
Naas (2) v UCC (7)
Shannon (1) v Dolphin (9)
Ballymena v Banbridge
Friday night rugby returns to Eaton Park. Maybe the decision was premature in light of Ulster playing Connacht at the Kingspan stadium the same night. Back to the rugby this is a crucial match for both teams. Ballymena have lost their last two matches after an opening day win at 10th place Old Wesley. Banbridge have surprised many with their opening performances. Two wins and a draw have the team well placed in Div 1B with only two points separating the top four teams. Ballymena find themselves in bottom six with five points separating these teams.
Ballymena Head coach Andy Graham acknowledged his team were beaten by the better side in Limerick last week when UL Bohemians won 36 – 13. Their coach felt his team had finally clicked after a slow start. Former Grenoble and Racing 92 scrum half James Hart being the stand out player on the pitch. Indiscipline continues to be a problem with another three players yellow carded during the match bringing the total to nine in their first three matches. You cannot afford to be playing 30 minutes in matches with only 14 players at this level. Injuries continue to impact on selection with both Mark Foster and Jonny Rossborough ruled out with HIA’s for three weeks. Number 8 Adrian Hamilton has a knee injury that hopefully will respond to treatment in the coming weeks with winger James Beattie not expected to return before Xmas. Marcus Rea remains on the injured list with both Willy McKay and John McMullan unavailable.
Ulster releases this week include: Brett Herron, David Shanahan, Clive Ross, Ross Kane, Callum Patterson and Adam McBurney. Matty Rea is rested this week.
Ballymena will look to their younger players to keep their place in Division 1B this season. They include Angus Kernohan, Michael Stronge, Matty Agnew, Ryan Mathieson, Ben O’Ryan, Matthew Norris, Houston Bonnar, Dean Reynolds, Josh Bill, Joe Thompson and Tim Savoury.
Ballymena team: 1. Nacho Crespo, 2. Adam McBurney, 3. Chris Cundell, 4. Connor Smyth, 5. David Whann, 6. Clive Ross, 7. Matty Agnew, 8. Stephen Mulholland, 9. David Shanahan, 10. Brett Herron, 11. Matthew Norris, 12. Glenn Baillie, 13. Callum Patterson, 14. Angus Kernohan, 15. Rodger McBurney, 16. Ross Kane, 17. James Taggart, 18. Joe Thompson, 19. Michael Stronge, 20. Alan Smyth.
Andy Graham is aware that Banbridge are going well and will be a tough team to play on Friday night. His players and the team need to find their form and tighten up their game. Players are not producing in attack. Another focus for the players is to work with the referees and realise they are right and not challenge their decision. Silly yellow cards are being given away by ‘laziness’ and ‘frustration’ of the players. Players have to learn to deal with getting frustrated with the officials on the pitch.
Banbridge Head coach Daniel Soper was pleased with the improvements shown by his team in their 42 – 35 win over Naas last week. This was evidence of things worked on in training transferring into their game which is exactly what the coaches asked for. It had been pleasing that many of the stand out players for the 1st xv have been the players who have progressed up through the club. In saying that players like Eric O’Sullivan and Caleb Montgomery have made an excellent impact.
Unfortunately Caleb has picked up a knock last week and misses the game at Ballymena. Hopefully for the players sake he will be okay for the Ulster A team in their British & Irish Cup game next weekend against Scarlets Select on the 14th October.
His team are expecting a very physical match on Friday night, particularly with Ballymena being strengthened with Ulster players.
The Banbridge coach was also delighted with the performance of the club 2nd xv in reaching the last eight of the Junior Cup. It was a positive outcome for the squad. The core of that team had trained very hard all summer and that result at Cooke is a real boost.
Ulster releases include Rob Lyttle, Eric O’Sullivan, Michael Lowry and Tom O’Toole. Injury rules out Caleb Montgomery, James Hume and Greg Jones.
Ballynahinch v UL Bohemians
Expect a big crowd at ‘Fortress Ballymacarn’ for a Hinch 1st xv that is starting to find some form for the game this week against UL Bohemians. After an opening day loss the team have bounced back with two bonus point wins against Old Wesley and Dolphin. Winger Richard Reaney has score three tries in his last two matches with Ulster players David Busby and Captain Aaron Cairns amongst the try scorers. Out half Jonny McPhillips is showing his form with the boot with full back Conor Kelly using his pace to score tries. It is the kicking option now available the back three offer Ballynahinch this season.
Director of Rugby Ronnie Duncan felt the win last Sat was the best the team have played this season. Late changes last week included Clayton Milligan making his debut at hooker in place of Zac McCall with Conor Piper coming on to the bench. Another Ulster player Jack Regan was unavailable due to injury and was replaced by Conall Boomer in the second row with Keith Dickson coming on to the bench. Ross Carlisle was also brought onto the bench replacements.
The players are keeping grounded despite the wins and will face their strongest opposition so far in UL Bohemians who comprehensively defeated Ballymena 36 -13 in Limerick. The team are under no illusions about the task that confronts them as they look to end this first block of games with their third win. The Ballynahinch team contained three schoolboys in Zac Ward, Clayton Milligan and Campbell Classon in the forwards. Discipline in the team has been good with only three yellow cards being issued.
Ulster releases this week include: Jonny ‘Mo’ Simpson, David Busby, Aaron Cairns, Jonny McPhillips, Jack Regan, Aaron Hall and Rory Butler with Zac McCall not released due to injury with Peter Browne following HIA protocols after picking up head injury against Zebre.
The Ballynahinch coaches have difficult decisions to make with Stuart Morrow, Ross Carlisle, Will Stewart and Rory Butler coming into contention for a starting place in the backs. Clayton Milligan is expected to start in the absence of the injured Zac McCall with the coaches having to decide on a second row pairing from John Donnan, Jack Regan and Conal Boomer with the back row expected to be along similar lines. Rugby consultant Brian McLaughlin rewards players for good performances and has to look at bringing in Conor Phillips and Gareth Gill after strong displays against Instonians 1st xv in the Junior Cup. Prop Jonny Blair was another player to impress after coming off the bench to replace Stuart Orr last Sat in Cork.
Ballynahinch team: 1. Campbell Classon, 2. Clayton Milligan, 3. Jonny ‘Mo’ Simpson, 4. John Donnan, 5. Jack Regan, 6. Aaron Hall, 7. Olly Loughead, 8. Conal Boomer, 9. Aaron Cairns (Captain), 10. Jonny McPhillips, 11. David Busby, 12. Stuart Morrow, 13. Callum McLaughlin, 14. Richard Reaney, 15. Conor Kelly. 16. Connor Piper, 17. Jonny Blair, 18. Zac Ward, 19. Blane McIIroy, 20 Tom Rock.
Blackrock College (10) v City of Armagh (1)
Galway Corinthians (8) v Nenagh Ormond (4)
Greystones (9) v Highfield (6)
Malone (2) v Galwegians (5)
Queens Uni (3) v Cashel RFC (7)
City of Armagh v Blackrock College
Head coach Willy Faloon and his players will be mindful you cannot be complacent as Div 2A league leaders as Armagh travel to Dublin to play a Blackrock side still searching for their first league win.
Armagh Assistant coach Chris Parker is anticipating a few changes this week just to freshen up the starting line up with Harvey Young and Michael Hoey impressing off the bench last week for the 1st xv. Definitely out is full back Timmy McNeice who is still two weeks away from a return to action. Prop Philip Matthews is available again this week and will be considered for the front row whilst once again James Hanna, Barry Finn and Chris Cousins produced excellent performances for the 2nd xv in their 40 – 34 Junior Cup win at Ballyclare..
Again the coaches are expecting a tough match on Saturday with Blackrock searching for their first win especially after losing to the last play of the game in their 26 – 22 defeat at Galwegians.
The coaches were delighted with the performance of the 2nd xv against Ballyclare who are one of the top sides in Div 1 of the Ulster Rugby Championship. The team will need a similar performance against Coleraine in the quarter final. Both these two teams meet the week before in the Conference league.
Malone v Galwegians
Three wins against Munster teams have the Gibson Park side level on points with Armagh at the top of Div 2A. Head coach Paddy Armstrong will be looking to make it four before the team breaks for three weeks. The 1st xv picked up several injuries in their injury time 18 -16 win at Cashel. Once again winger Rory Campbell kicked the decisive penalty for his team. Two yellow cards allowed Cashel back into the game with their two man advantage. What epitomises this Malone team this season is their never say die attitude and their willingness to play to the final whistle.
The coach was delighted with how all the players dug deep last week for the win. A number of injuries disrupted the side but the players showed real character to come back at the end.
Hooker Dave Cave picked up a nasty injury and will be out for a number of weeks. He is replaced by Dan Kerr. Second row Michael Shiels is unavailable so Matthew Dalton will start in the second row. With Callum Smith unavailable Josh Pentland starts at outhalf. Max Porter, Lee Barlow, Mark O’Connor and Ulster under 19 scrum half Callum Harkin take their place on the bench with Harkin coming in for Connor Spence.
Ulster releases include: Jack Owens, Matthew Dalton, Joe Dunleavy and Peter Cooper.
The Malone players have stepped up their training this week as they look to back up their win in Cashel with another good performances this week.
There was also delight at the club last Sat as the 2nd xv defeated Grosvenor to progress to the quarter finals of the Junior Cup.
Malone team: 1. Ben Halliday, 2. Dan Kerr, 3. Peter Cooper, 4. Matthew Dalton, 5. Josh Davidson, 6. Joe Dunleavy, 7. Ross Todd (Captain), 8. Ryan Clarke, 9. Shane Kelly, 10. Josh Pentland, 11. David McMaster, 12. Nathan Brown, 13. Michael Cartmill, 14. Rory Campbell, 15. Jack Owens, 16. Scott Finlay, 17. Lee Barlow, 18. Max Porter, 19. Callum Harkin, 20. Mark O’Connor.
Queens University v Cashel RFC
The students done what no other side had achieved against Highfield in Cork for the last three years, in defeating the home side 16 -13. Key players were former Cambridge Captain Daniel Dass along with centres Conor Shiels and Rory Bell. It was former Wallace Captain and number 8 Gary Dillon who scored a crucial try with full back Ritchie McMaster converting the try and kicking three penalties.
Queens team were: 1. Anton Lupari, 2. Alexander Clarke, 3. Andrew Clingan, 4. Ali Burke, 5. David Whitten, 6. Daniel Dass, 7. Nigel Simpson (Captain), 8. Gary Dillon, 9. Jonny Stewart, 10. John Creighton, 11. Jonny Milliken, 12, Conor Shiels, 13. Rory Bell, 14. Gerard Treanor, 15. Ritchie McMaster, 16. Nicky Woods,17.. David Swann, 18. Marc Campbell, 19. Jonny Lees, 20. Josh Fullerton.
Injuries continue to rule out Josh Jordan, Jack Milligan and Angus Curtis.
Ulster releases include: Jonny Stewart and Alexander Clarke.
Queens are 3rd in the league three points behind Malone and Armagh. They are expecting another tough physical game with Munster visitors Cashel who will be looking to bounce back from their 18 – 16 defeat at home to Malone. Nenagh lost at home to Malone and travelled to Queens where they won 37 – 31. The Queens coaches will not want to see a repeat this weekend at the Dub.
Navan RFC (6() v Dungannon (7)
Old Crescent (2) v Wanderers (1)
Rainey OB (4) v MU Barnhall (5)
Skerries (3) v Belfast Harlequins (10)
Sunday’s Well (9) v City of Derry (8)
Dungannon v Navan RFC
Two home defeats have put an early dent in the ambitions of the Stevenson Park team to be amongst the early pacesetters. Suddenly they find themselves nine points behind league leaders Wanderers after three matches . Navan won away to Belfast Harlequins and then lost at home to Rainey OB.
Talking to Head coach Andy Hughes his team had the opportunity to turn around a 7 – 5 deficit against Old Crescent to take the lead. They failed to take advantage and suddenly found themselves two scores behind. Without the presence of backs coach Seamus Mallon on the pitch the young Dungannon backline played into the loose game the Limerick side are good at. It was naive tactics that were the undoing of the team. It was a case of everything Old Crescent tried including a reverse pass from a prop that came off as Dungannon possession came to nothing. The coach feels this loss has been a proverbial ‘kick up the arse for his players’. New combinations are not working and this was a fear the coach had at the beginning of the season. Intensity levels are not there in the teams performance. The talent is there but they don’t have the experience of playing together. This weekend is all about trying to get a result at Navan and using the three week break to work on the teams continuity on the pitch.
This weekend the coach is without injured players: Sean O’Hagan, Conor McGeough, Ross McCaughey, James McMahon and David Leyburn.
New NZ second row Adam Batt played his first game for the club on Sat. Other players returning this week include Mark Riddell, Seamus Mallon, Mervyn Brown and Stephen Todd. Jonny Black who replaced Sean O’Hagan in the Old Crescent game will continue in the front row at Navan.
For the Head coach it is all about getting the win and trying to get the team to gel. The talent is there – now it is time for players to show it.
Belfast Harlequins v Skerries
Quins make the trip down south this weekend seeking out their first win of the season. Their opponents Skerries have the satisfaction of defeating Ulster sides Dungannon and City of Derry in their opening games. Can Belfast Harlequins prevent them making it three. The Deramore side are down in 10th place, two points behind 9th place Sunday’s Well with both these teams searching for their first UBL win.
Head coach Nicky Wells has made a number of changes from the squad that played against Rainey last Saturday. Mark McGrath moves over to loose head with Charlie Sargaison coming in at tight head. There are positional changes in the back row with Saul Herdman moving to number 8 and Daryl Marshall switching to 6. In the backs Paul Kerr replaces Christian Bennison at 12 with Ewang Strang replacing Matthew McClelland on the wing. There are a number of changes amongst the replacements with James Harrison, Rory Winters and Thomas Gallagher joining Jonny Jordan and James McConnell on the bench.
Quins team: 1. Mark McGrath (Captain), 2.Neil Montgomery, 3. Charlie Sargaison, 4. Ken McKenzie, Callum Leckey, Matthew Bourne, Daryll Marshall,
Saul Herdman, 9. Conor McAuley, 10. Timmy Emerson, 11.. Ewang Strang, 12. Paul Kerr, 13. Mark Gribben, 14. Richie Mckee, 15. Mark Glover, 16. James Harrison, 17. Rory Winters, 18. Thomas Gallagher, 19. Jonny Jordan, 20 James McConnell.
Rainey OB v MU Barnhall
John Andrews will be pleased his team are in the top four of this Division, yet they find themselves six points behind league leaders Wanderers. He will also be aware that the team have left behind early season points in these games. Saturday past at Deramore Park was another example of a talented Rainey team not securing the bonus point. Individually Rainey are a skilful side but collectively they are not performing as a team. They have to learn to finish off the numerous try scoring opportunities they create. Quins fought for their lives to deny Rainey the bonus point.
Josh McIIroy will return this week to take his place in the centre with Michael McCusker and Kieron Donaghy added to the squad. Winger Robert Lamberton who picked up an injury at Quins will undergo a late fitness test on Thursday night with Ulster under 19 player Michael O’Neill standing by to take his place.
Ulster releases: John McCusker. Tommy O’Hagan remains on injured list.
City of Derry v Sunday’s Well
One win and two defeats for City of Derry in their opening three games. Once again it was another dogged performance against 3rd place Skerries at the Craig Thompson stadium. Derry had worked themselves back into the game to reduce the Skerries lead to 28 – 25 with 15 minutes to go. Two late tries denied the home side any points. The positives for City of Derry head coach Trevor Will has been the performances of new scrum half Tyler Rogers – Holden. There is potential in this young squad with the kiwi scrum half forging an effective half back partnership with the experienced Neil Burns. With four changes to the Derry pack it was always going to be difficult for their young forwards to compete with the experienced Skerries pack over 80 mins.
This week it is a long trip to Cork to play 9th place Sunday’s Well with three points separating these two teams.
Bangor (5) v Thomond (4)
Bective Rangers (10) v Midleton (7)
Seapoint (8) v Malahide RFC (3)
Sligo (2) v Omagh (1)
Tullamore (9) v Bruff (6)
Bangor v Thomond
Promising start by the North Down side with two wins from three. Can they make it three from four. Two points separate Thomond in 3rd place and Bangor in 5th. A number of new faces have made their presence felt in these opening games including full back Nathan Graham and scrum half/outhalf Lewis Bret. Another to mark his debut for the 1st xv was young second row Martin Withers who scored his first try for the Senior side.
Bangor 1st xv manager Ricky Armstrong was delighted with the win down in Midleton. The team played really well against a big side with the Bangor set piece strong throughout the game. There was also a much improved defensive effort with the hunger from the players to tackle over the 80 minutes. The desire to not let Midleton over the gain line was what won the team the match on Saturday.
The players felt the early season trip to Cork was what the players needed. 25 players plus the alickadoos stayed for the two nights. It helped in the younger players getting to know the older players and done wonders for the squad. This was reflected in the attitude at training on Tuesday night.
A weekend of bonding and eating together in the morning build up to the match enabled the players to win the match against Midleton. Afterwards the players celebrated the win together. It was just reward after a tough pre season and their opening UBL games.
Bangor still have a few players out injured including Jamie Clegg, Ryan Latimer and Ali Lockhart. Gareth Wright returns to take his place on the bench. He missed the game last weekend due to work commitments. Former Bangor Grammar player Lewis Bret played his first game at scrum half for the 1st xv and showed his versatility after playing 10 against Seapoint by scoring another try. In fact all those present named him as MOM in Cork. It means that Bangor now have three scrum halves contesting the nine jersey in Ali Lockhart, Lewis Bret and Gareth Wright. Another new addition to join Bangor is former Campbell College and Donaghadee number 8 Jack Cooke who has returned from two years working and playing rugby in Australia. Bangor were looking a replacement for Curtis Stewart and they believe they have found the ideal replacement who will start on the bench on Sat.
Bangor name an unchanged team for Thomond this weekend at Upritchard Park.
Team: 1. Philip Whyte (Captain), 2. Andrew Shaw, 3. James Leary, 4. Lewis Stevenson, 5. Dave Caughey, 6. James Henley, 7. James Stewart, 8. David Bradford, 9. Lewis Bret, 10. Ross McCloskey, 11. Dave Charles, 12. Desi Fusco, 13. Phil Broderick, 14. Rob Gamble, 15. Nathan Graham, 16. Charlie Clegg, 17. Martin Withers, 18. Gareth Wright, 19. Adam McCusker, 20 Jack Cooke.
Omagh v Sligo
1st against 2nd at Hamilton Park in Sligo this weekend. The Connacht side narrowly missed out on promotion last season and are expected to be amongst the favourites for promotion in this league. Can Omagh build on their impressive start to the season with two wins and a draw to sit at the top of Division 2C.
Coach Phil Marshall makes one change with Lee Murphy returning from injury to replace Adam Beattie on the bench. He is also delighted to see two of his long term injuries return to play for the seconds at Ards on Sat with hopefully another ½ players making themselves available by the end of the month.
One player he is anxious to see back playing is second row Johnny Sproule who remains unavailable.
He knows his team face their toughest test of the season against a big Sligo side. Any points from this game would be a bonus. Can the team make it four games undefeated before the three week break.
The coach agrees it has been a great start with his players learning all the time. They are relishing the challenge and to do it with a squad full of local players is terrific. This was always Phil Marshall’s goal, now he has achieved this. We wish them well.