Banbridge Academy boys will be attempting to emulate their female counterparts later this month when they take on RBAI in the quarter finals of the John Minnis Estate Agents Burney Cup.
Following the girls achievement in reaching the Belfast Telegraph Senior Cup final for the fourth year in a row on Wednesday, the boys will have a hard act to follow. However, they are certainly among the dark horses for the Burney, having already beaten the holders Friends’ en route to the last eight.
Bann will start slight favourites against Inst, especially with the benefit of home advantage, having also been runners up in the Irish schoolboys’ championship last year.
Most of the big guns have been kept apart in the quarter final draw with Sullivan Upper, last year’s beaten finalists, McCullough Cup holders Wallace HS, Bann and Methody all expected to progress.
Sullivan will face Campbell as they bid to go one better than last year and Holywood coach Paul Osborne is looking forward to the tie.
“We are happy with a home draw and to avoid Wallace, Banbridge and Methody but if we get through then will get one of them next,” he said.
“We played and beat them 8-0 in the McCullough Cup group stage but they are a very young side who got their first win of the season against Royal and Prior in first round of the Burney. It’s a local derby so it will be a nervy contest.”
Wallace, who beat Friends’ in the McCullough final and are no strangers to Burney finals, are up against Regent and, like Sullivan, have home advantage.
“We haven’t played Regent this season but know that they will be a tough and well organised opponent and that they possess an excellent goalkeeper,” said Wallace coach Gareth Kidd.
“We will be confident in ourselves to get the result but know that we need to train and play well to defeat them.”
The other tie sees Methody start favourites to over come Antrim Grammar.
JMEA Quarter Final Draw
(Games to be played on Wednesday 27th February or Saturday 2nd March)
Wallace High School v Regent House
Antrim Grammar School v Methodist College
Banbridge Academy v RBAI
Sullivan Upper v Campbell College