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Tough opening defence for Sacred Hearts

Sacred Heart's defence of their Gilligan Cup title will start next month when they travel away to take on St. Joseph's Glasthule in what will be a severe first round test for the Tallaght side.

Hearts, who defeated St. Pat's CY in the final last season, are right in the mix at the top of Division 1B and with the Saints struggling in the league above a scalping could be on the cards.

The highest ranked side in the competition at present, Verona, face a huge battle when they travel to Tallaght to meet a rejuvenated Shamrock Rovers while last season's runners, St. Pat's CY face a tough task at home to Division 1B leaders, Kilnamanagh.

Gilligan Cup first round: St. Mochtas v Pegasus; Tymon Celtic v Drumcondra; Valeview Shankill v Dunboyne, Garda v Beggsboro; St. Pat's CY v Kilnamanagh; St. Joseph's Glasthule v Sacred Heart; St. James' Gate v Whitehall Rangers; Shamrock Rovers v Verona; Postal United v Ballyfermot United; Fairview CYM v Lucan United; UCD v Confey; Parkvilla v Leixlip United. Byes: Boyne Rovers; Rathcoole Boys, Glenville, CIE Ranch.

Ties to be played on 7th of February. St Moctha's against Pegasus will take place on a later date.

Crumlin cup joy arrives on twin fronts

There was double cup joy for Crumlin United during midweek when the Blues' Saturday side advanced in the Leinster Junior Cup while their Sunday outfit moved into the third round of the Cahill Cup.

On Monday night Crumlin's Major Saturday side crushed Dingle United by five goals to nil. Anto Kavanagh netted a hat trick while there was a goal each for Darren Soon and Karl Roche. United now move into the last 32 and a clash with fellow LSL side Dublin Bus.

The following night Ger Brambrick netted the only goal of Crumlin's second round Cahill Cup clash against Mount Merrion at Pearse Park.

Bambrick's strike was his second winner in two days as the former Bluebell man had netted the vital goal against Malahide United on Sunday in the league.

Floodlight action to help ease backlog

The importance of floodlight football will never be more evident within the LSL that this coming week with a batch of high-class cup games up for decision.

The foul weather put paid to many games in the league in the past few weeks, but with so many clubs with top notch floodlit facilities the backlog looks set to be cleared up very quickly.

The first ever tie in the newly introduced Noel Ryan Cup takes place in Edenderry this Wednesday when Edenderry Town take on Senior Divison 1 leaders, Arklow Town, in the preliminary round.

The EBS Metropolitan Cup will also shine under the lights with three first round ties taking place over three different nights. Tomorrow night Metro Cup holders, Firhouse Clover, will make the trip to Kildare to take on Newbridge Town while the following night Glebe North will take the short spin from Balbriggan to United Park to meet Drogheda Town.

On Thursday Senior Division side, Phoenix, meet former winners of this trophy, Greystones, in Scribblestown.

If you have a story for the LSL pages in Striker then send an email to niallfeery@gmail.com