Thanks to postponed games, Rainey Old Boys will be in action every week from now until the last day of the Ulster Bank All Ireland League programme.
This weekend Rainey travel to Cork to play Sunday’s Well at Irish Independent Park.
Rainey have won all their games at the famous old stadium when it was called Musgrave Park and, although it will not be easy on Saturday, they will hope to continue that stunning run.
The Well had lost their three opening games before they beat Rainey 10-6 in a dreadful encounter at Hatrick Park in early October. They did not look a good side that day, but have done well since, with a steady winning run taking them into the top four.
Rainey will have to pull out all the stops if they are to get anything out of this one.
The Old Boys then face Bective Rangers at Hatrick Park on March 5 before going on the road for three weeks against Highfield, Dungannon and Barnhall. They finish the season against Seapoint in Magherafelt.
While City of Derry still lead the way despite a surprising slump, the pack behind them is closing in on the top of the league. There have been some eye-catching results as Barnhall, Armagh and Dungannon upset the form book.
Rainey Old Boys RFC expresses its condolences to Anne and the family at the death of Noel McCrea.
After playing at prop for Rainey ES in the 1965 Schools’ Cup Final, Noel McCrea continued at a high level at Edinburgh University and later at Ballymena.
He came to the Old Boys around the mid-seventies. Due to work commitments as a vet, however, he was only able to play every other week. While he would have been a regular on the firsts for years, he was happy to turn out for any side which called him. He was never known to say ‘no’.
It didn’t matter what team sought his services or where the destination was - he would be there. This loyalty to the club marked him out as something special. He was to play for many years and particularly enjoyed his outings with the Oldies XV.
After hanging up the boots, Noel became a regular along the line at home games, his vet’s clothing and footwear coming in handy on many an occasion.
His sons David, Colin and Richard joined the club, the latter playing his part in many of their proudest moments. Noel travelled to Galway twice one weekend when David and the U20 lads reached the All-Ireland Final. David was club captain in season 2009-2010.
Members like Noel do not come along very often.
Sunday’s Well v Rainey Old Boys
Armagh II v Rainey II
Rainey III v Ballymoney II