Since our last Intermediate update we have seen a bumper festive period come and go, and the new NAFL Premier Division leaders have had a fantastic month. The Kilmore side not only kept up their 100% league record, but they also won the Border Cup following a thrilling New Years Day Final at Seaview against Rathfriland.
Liam Sloans men battled back from 1-0 down to lead 2-1 with two quickfire goals on the stroke of half time. Rathfriland grabbed an equaliser in the second half, but that was the end of the scoring and Olympic triumphed on penalties to seal an historic victory.
In ‘domestic’ matters the club secured three wins from three games including back to back victories over near neighbours, and basement boys, Drumaness Mills. This weekend they enjoyed a 5-2 home win over Islandmagee, who have recently appointed former Ards Rangers & Knockbreda boss Lee Forsythe to their hot seat, taking over from caretaker Michael Moore.
East Belfast also enjoyed back to back wins in a double salvo of meetings with Derriaghy, while Crumlin Star secured away wins over Shankill United and Killyleagh meaning both sides also keep their 100% records intact. At the foot of the table, Drumaness remain without a point, with 1st Bangor just four points to the good.
In the BPIL, long time leaders Dunloy show no sign of letting up their title chase with a perfect record of two wins from two leaving them 16 points clear of nearest rivals St James Swifts. The one caveat to add is that the Celtic Park men have four games in hand over the McCamphill Park men, with just one meeting between the sides to come in Dunloy. Coagh United remain in the slipstreams, with only ten games played so far they have seven games in hand on the leaders and sit 24 points behind.
Down at the bottom, Desertmartin and Cookstown RBL remain detached from the teams above, six points behind Chimney Corner and Brantwood, while Ballynure have secured four much-needed points to lift themselves up into 9th position in the table.
On to Mid Ulster now where inconsistency was the order of the day across the festivities. In the 12 league games played there were six draws, with only Ballymacash Rangers picking up full points from their two games played.
On Saturday they came out on the right side of a 5-3 scoreline away to current leaders Rectory Rangers. The visitors had lead 2-0 before a swift turnaround for Rectory saw them go 3-2 up. Rory Patterson got his second of the game to equalise before halftime, with Michael Gaults’ men pulling away from their hosts in the second half.
There was a change at the foot of the table with Laurelvale leapfrogging Fivemiletown United thanks to a pair of home draws, both finishing 1-1 with Hanover and Tandragee Rovers.
It was a fairly quiet time in the NI Intermediate League, but it sets it up for a busy second half of the season with the majority of the league campaign to be played. Strabane Athletic remain in top spot despite not playing a league game since our last update, with their 100% record from four games.
Newbuildings United also have a 100% record, thanks to a fine 4-1 home win over 2018 champions Magherafelt Sky Blues. At the bottom end of the table, both Maiden City and Trojans remain without a point.
Northern Amateur Football League Premier Division
|6||Derriaghy C C||14||6||3||5||25||30||-5||21|
|8||Larne Tech O.B.||9||5||1||3||26||14||12||16|
|13||1st Bangor Old Boys||12||1||1||10||14||38||-24||4|
Ballymena & Provincial Intermediate League
|2||St James Swifts||13||10||1||2||48||14||34||31|
Mid Ulster Intermediate A
NI Intermediate League
|5||Magherafelt Sky Blues||5||1||1||3||7||14||-7||4|