Bann Ladies to pick up league trophy at Havelock

Banbridge Ladies celebrate their promotion from Senior One.
Banbridge Ladies celebrate their promotion from Senior One.

There will be big celebrations at Banbridge Hockey Club this weekend.

And rightly so after it was confirmed that next season, the town will have a ladies team in the top level of Ulster Hockey for the first time.

Thumbs up for scorer Elayne Brown, who netted the historic goal!

Thumbs up for scorer Elayne Brown, who netted the historic goal!

Last week, Banbridge Ladies secured the Senior One title with a narrow 1-0 victory over Cookstown. 
It takes their record to 14 league wins and one draw so far this season.

But regardless of the result when they host Ballymena in their final game of the season at Havelock on Saturday (pass-back 1pm), they hope to be collecting the trophy come the final whistle.

Ulster Hockey confirmed that they are hopeful that President David Larmour will be in attendance to present their prize.

The real reward, however, won’t come until next season when the team are a top level Ulster side.

“We are so proud of the whole team,” said Banbridge Hockey Club President Sheree Totton.

“They have worked so hard this season and that hard work has really paid off.

“To win the league with three games left to play at this level is fantastic. We look forward to seeing the girls playing at the top level in Ulster hockey next season.

“Huge congratulations to our ladies and to their coach Robin Madeley.

“This is a massive achievement for the girls and it means that Bann will be represented in the Premier League in Ulster for the first time in the club’s history.”

So can they go unbeaten? Well, Bann have three games left in Senior One. And Coach Robin Madeley is determined not to let that bonus slip through their fingers. He said: “The last three games won’t be easy but two of them are against Ballymena, the Senior Cup champions. We have a point to prove against them and then we have Rainey away to finish.

“An unbeaten season rarely happens and it’s something that you remember forever. It would be another huge boost to the confidence.”