League challenge all but over after draw in Dublin

Bann are now firmly back in the chasing pack, eight points adrift of leaders Lisnagarvey. Pic: INPHO/Cathal Noonan
Bann are now firmly back in the chasing pack, eight points adrift of leaders Lisnagarvey. Pic: INPHO/Cathal Noonan

Banbridge Hockey Club’s title challenge is all but over.

That was the admission of Head Coach Mark Tumilty after his side failed to beat Glenanne in Dublin on Saturday.

Bann had to bag a late equaliser to secure a 3-3 draw. In last week’s Leader, Tumilty said they had to win to keep chasing leaders Garvey.

So did Bann’s slip coupled with a late Garvey winner over Railway Union on Saturday putan end to their challenge?

“Yes,” he said. “We knew that going into the game. I suppose if we win all nine games, we have a slight chance. That has to be the aim now. We have to make sure we at least get top three and get into the play-offs for a chance of reaching Europe.”

Bann fell 1-0 behind before goals from Josh Moffett and Eugene Magee but them 2-1 ahead. In a topsy-turvy game, the hosts equalised and took the lead four minutes from time before a deflected Eugene Magee effort from a short corner levelled the scores.

“I thought it was the best we’ve played in a while,” he said. “Our movement up front was as good as it’s been but that’s the way this part of the season has gone for us.

“Our own lack of discipline cost us. We got three yellows and a green and that makes it difficult.

“There were inconsistencies in the game the game was umpired and we let that get to us. We have to be better than that.

“We’ve drawn four games and deserved to beat Monkstown and Three Rock and should have beaten Cork C of I, 2-1 up with seconds to go.”