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  • Writer's pictureStuart Dellow

Ballyclare v Ards Match Preview

Lough 41 Championship.

Ballyclare Comrades vs Ards.

Dixon Park.

Saturday 22nd April at 2.00 p.m.

With only one defeat in their last seven games and wins over three of the current top four included in that run, Ards travel to Ballyclare looking to cement their fifth place over a home side sitting just two points behind the Red and Blues going into the final two fixtures. Three points at Dixon Park would therefore guarantee Ards fifth place and give them a chance of catching fourth placed Annagh United who are three points ahead but are in a poor run of form and have to face Dundela and Warrenpoint in their last two fixtures.

Ballyclare's recent results include a draw against title winners Loughgall, two wins over Annagh, as well as victories over Dundela and Warrenpoint so they can't be taken lightly. Their team is sprinkled with players who have spent time at Ards, including Darius Roohi, Calvin McCurry and Gary Donnelly who between them have scored 33 this season. Roohi is top scorer with eight in his last eleven games and 17 for the season, while Donnelly and McCurry have eight each, even Conal McGrandles the ex Ards defender has chipped in with a couple, including the winner over Dundela.

Previous encounters between the two sides this season have been even, Ards opening with a 2-1 win at Clandeboye Park in August, followed by a 3-3 draw at the same venue in November. Ballyclare got revenge when Gary Donnelly scored a late winner as the Comrades triumphed 3-2 at home on Valentine's night.

An Ards squad with numerous niggling injuries will have been glad of the extra day's rest before this fixture, having won 2-1 at Annagh last Friday night, when Ross Hunter and Championship Player of the Year nominee Adam Salley were on target, while Alex Moore in the Ards goal had to be at his best at times to keep the home side at bay. It is hoped some of those injuries will have cleared up allowing a strong side to start at Dixon Park.

The early kick-off means the PASC bus will leave the Social Club/Gibson's Lane area at 12.45 p.m All fans are encouraged to use this convenient way of getting to the game.

Match Officials :-

Referee :- Louise Thompson.

1st Assistant :- Bryan Magill.

2nd Assistant :- Jason Millar.

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