By John Hudson
Dublin City University (DCU) will finally get the chance to bid for a back-to-back Collingwood Cup win in the New Year when the Irish Universities all island flagship cup returns after last year’s competition was postponed due to the post-Christmas restrictions on sport.
The Glasnevin side claimed their first ever success in one of Irish football’s oldest cup competitions at Dalymount Park in February 2020 when they overcame Ulster University in a penalty shootout after the sides had played out a scoreless draw.
The format for this season’s competition which begins in early February, has been changed from the time honored three to four-day event played at a host university to a regular knock out format with the opening two rounds taking place at the home of the first drawn team unless the traveling distance between the sides proves a difficulty. The semi-finals and final will be played at neutral venues.
DCU avoided being drawn in one of the two first round games and were handed a home quarter final draw against Queens University Belfast.
While Ulster University the defeated 2020 finalists will face the winner of the opening round tie between NUI Galway and Limerick’s Mary Immaculate College at the AUL Complex in Dublin.
The quarter final also sees a huge game set for Belfield where multiple Collingwood winners UCD will take on old rivals UCC in what promises to be one of the tie’s of the round.
The first round ties will take place on Wednesday February 2 with the quarter finals to follow on Wednesday February 16 and the semi finals at Athlone Town Stadium on Tuesday and Wednesday February 22 and 23.
The final is set for Wednesday March 16 with the venue to be confirmed later.
The draw was also made for the Harding Cup which is confined to current first year students.
Unfortunately, the entry is down on previous years and as a result the Universities executive decided on a format that splits the six teams into two separate groups and each group will play a round robin one day tournament on Tuesday January 25 2022 at two host venues with games of a 60-minute duration.
The winner of each group will go on to meet in the 90-minute final at Athlone Town Stadium on Friday January 28 2022.
FULL CUP DRAWS
Irish Universities Collingwood Cup
NUI Galway v Mary Immaculate College, Galway, 2.0.
Trinity College Dublin v University of Limerick, College Park 2.0.
Ties to be played on Wednesday February 2 2022.
DCU v Queens University Belfast, DCU Sports Ground, 2.0..
Ulster University v NUI Galway or Mary Immaculate College, AUL Complex Dublin, 2.0.
UCD v UCC, Belfield, 2.0.
Maynooth University v Trinity College Dublin or University of Limerick, Maynooth University North Campus, 2.0.
Ties to be played on Wednesday February 16 2022.
DCU or Queens University Belfast v Ulster University or NUI Galway or Mary Immaculate College.
Tuesday February 22 2022 at Athlone Town Stadium, 2.0.
UCD or UCC v Maynooth University or Trinity College Dublin or University of Limerick.
Wednesday February 23 2022 at Athlone Town Stadium, 2.0.
Collingwood Cup Final
Wednesday March 16 2022 at a neutral venue TBC.
Irish Universities Harding Cup
South West Group (at University of Limerick): NUI Galway, UCC and University of Limerick.
Tuesday January 25 2022.
University of Limerick v UCC, ko 12 noon.
UCC v NUI Galway, ko 2.0
University of Limerick v NUI Galway, ko 4.0.
Dublin Regional Group (at Maynooth University): Trinity College Dublin, Maynooth University and DCU.
Tuesday January 25 2022.
Maynooth University v DCU, ko 12 noon.
DCU v Trinity College Dublin, ko 2.0.
Maynooth University v Trinity College Dublin, ko 4.0.
Harding Cup Final
Friday January 28 2022
Winner South West Group v Winner Dublin Regional Group
Athlone Town Stadium, 1.0.