Ballymena hosted Bective Rangers in the AIL and won 8-3.
With the recent weather front that has been affecting games the width and length of the country this game was also cast into doubt. An early morning inspection deemed the pitch playable. The game got underway with Ballymena playing into a strong breeze and driving rain which gave the visitors an early advantage. After a series of line outs Bective put the braid men’s attack under pressure which lead to a visitors penalty in front of the posts. The Bective Outhalf slotted the ball between the uprights to open the scoring. 0-3. After the restart Bective rarely ventured back into the Ballymena half. The braid men started to dominate the set pieces with Andrew Warwick, John Andrew and Bryan Young getting the better of their opposite numbers. After a prolonged period of pressure by the home side the ball was fired out to the wing were number 8 Adrain Hamilton was waiting to run in for a try. Ballymena centre Callum Patterson struggled with the soft underfoot conditions and sent the conversion wide, 5-3. Ballymena played out the remaining of the half deep in the Bective half but a scrambling Bective defence kept the braid men out. Half time 5-3.
The second half started with Ballymena on top and after another prolonged period of play Ballymena were awarded a penalty for an infringement on the ground. This time Callum Patterson planted his supporting foot firmly as he booted the ball through the posts, 8-5. Despite enjoying the better procession Ballymena were unable to add to their score as the closed out the game for a vital win. The game finished 8-3 and with this win Ballymena see their promotion chances boosted as they remain in 5th place but now only one point of second place Barnhall. The braid men also have a game in hand over the the top four which leaves promotion in their own hands. Next up for Ballymena is an away trip to Ballynahinch in the ulster league which is being built as a title decider as first plays second place.