Showgrounds to host all-BSML Junior Cup semi-final

Harryville Homers and Carniny Rangers pictured during the Boxing Day O'Kane Cup final at the Showgrounds - the two rivals will meet again at the same venue in the semi-final of the IFA Junior Cup next month.
Harryville Homers and Carniny Rangers pictured during the Boxing Day O'Kane Cup final at the Showgrounds - the two rivals will meet again at the same venue in the semi-final of the IFA Junior Cup next month.

The junior football scene in Ballymena is gearing itself for one of the biggest matches of a generation next month.

Saturday Morning League kingpins Harryville Homers and Carniny Rangers have been drawn together in the semi-finals of the IFA Junior Cup.

And the sides received confirmation today (Tuesday) that the eagerly-anticipated clash will be played at Ballymena Showgrounds, on Monday, April 4 (7.45pm).

The two sides being paired together has eliminated the possibility of an all-Ballymena final in the Province’s most prestigious junior football competition.

But by the same token, it means the firmus energy Saturday Morning League is guaranteed to be represented in the showpiece May Day final for the fourth year in succession.

The clash of Homers and Carniny will be the first time the two rivals have met in a non-BSML fixture since the infamous County Antrim Junior Shield ‘final that never was’ in 2012 when both teams reached the decider only to fall foul of player ineligibility issues which saw both teams exit the competition.

That incident proved to be a watershed moment for junior football in the town with clubs paying greater attention to the rules of individual competitions and their renewed approach has resulted in unprecedented success, with Homers aiming for a third successive Junior Cup success.