Traditionally, Down seconds are poor starters in the league.

Last weekend, a considerably under-strength side travelled to Hillsborough to face Lisnagarvey fourths who did the double over the Malone Park outfit last year.

Stephen Moffatt started in goal after he was called into the side at the last moment and played well. Peter Simpson was handed his Down debut and also performed admirably and will be more than a useful acquisition in the weeks and months ahead.

Last year, Down started their Junior 3 campaign with a heavy defeat at the hands of Cookstown and they ended up finishing joint fourth - a repeat showing over the coming months would not go amiss.

This Saturday, Down seconds face Raphoe thirds in what promises to be another tough encounter and the players will have to be up for it.