The predicting and analysing of competitions in Leinster boils down to five simple ingredients. A dollop of "How has this team finished in the league in the last few seasons", a handful of "How has this team been performing against this year's opponents", a cup of "What has happened in the club over the winter?", and a sprinkling of "Have there been any major signings or defections from the club?".
Every year throws up a division that is closer than all the others, and this is it. Some one is going to be unlucky to be relegated, someone will rocket up the table after a couple of wins in August, and there will be a battle royal at the top. All we have to do is to try and find out who will fill which role.
Division 10 has all the potential to be the plot of Netflix's follow up to House of Cards. Will the young upstart Slieve Bloom 1 dramatically steal the limelight and push on for higher presidential glory? Will Merrion 6 bounce back up through the Capitol after several years in minor positions? Can those stalwarts of middle government Rush 3 finally realise their potential, or will they be disposed of in a ruthless fashion?
Michael Sharp, Secretary of the OCC, outlines the important competition regulations changes ahead of the 2014 season
Another preview, another set of excuses. Division 11 for 2014 is like the first day of school. There will be a number of teams who vaguely recognise each other, but the vast majority have never met before, and will spend the first term warily circling each other.
Division 12 looks like being a league of two halves this season, with the nine teams nicely dividing up in to a perceived bottom four, and a top five based on a bit of guesswork. However, I predicted the winner of this league last year, so lets try again!
Let us start this preview with a little bit of honesty. Division 13 looks like being a complete lottery in 2014. A case can be made for all nine teams to finish in the top three. But where is the fun in that? So once again, without wishing to offend anyone, and in the search for a small bit of entertainment, here is the 2014 preview of Division 13.
We started last year's league previews, bemoaning the fact that it was too hard to predict any winners at this level - before going to correctly predict that Castleknock 3 would walk away with the silverware. So no such attempts at deflecting criticism and failure, let's cut to the chase. Who will Division 14 in 2014?
University College Cork were crowned Inter-varsity indoor cricket champions at the weekend following a truly memorable competition at Jordanstown.
Nine teams will take the starting line for the 2014 Division 2 season. With Dublin University playing seven matches, the first nine rounds of the league will feature one team sitting out each week, with Dublin University's matches being allocated double points. The 2013 Division 2 season was a one sided affair, with Clontarf running away with the title. This year looks much closer though, and most of the teams would have ambitions of promotion (Merrion 2 and Pembroke 2 being the obvious exceptions).
The 2014 edition of RSA Leinster Open Division 1 gets under way on April 26th, with the eight top teams in the province doing battle, and attempting to lift the trophy won by The Hills in 2013.
The Whelan Cup has always been a fiercely fought competition, and with half of the twenty two teams having an excellent chance of progression to the last eight, the 2014 edition looks like being another cracker. Those twenty two teams are spread across three divisions (9, 10 and 11), and the cup represents the fourth tier of T20 competition in Leinster cricket
It is unusual to be able to confidently (ish) predict the semi finalists of a competition so far in advance, but this year's YMCA Salver throws up four teams who look to be far stronger than the rest.
One team has bestrode the Tillan Cup in recent years, and there is no reason why they shouldn't have a similarly successful competition in 2014. Merrion 2, were Tillain Cup champions (the T20 competition for the "second tier" teams) in 2012 and 2013, and with a handy home draw against Railway Union 2, they will feel confident of another run.
The dates and the venues for all RSA OCC Cup Finals for 2014.
Another new season, another new competition. With the massive expansion of cricket across Leinster in the last few years, there has needed to be more competitions to give everyone a chance of lifting some silverware. So 2014 will see the first installment of a new competition, provisionally titled the "Minor 2 Cup". Seventeen teams are in the draw, with a mix of teams from Division 13, Division 14 as a few non-league teams. As would probably be expected, two teams are making their cup debuts, and a further five teams haven't won a match since records started being properly recorded at this level in 2011.
With the numbers in the 2013 Minor Cup swelling to unmanageable proportions, 2014 will see a new (provisionally titled) "Minor 2 Cup". The draw for that will be published tomorrow, but today we look at the Minor Cup - no longer the baby of the competitions. The 2014 Minor Cup is the highest competition in the ladder where non-league teams clash with their league counterparts, and we'll start by looking at the fortunes of those three non-league teams.
After a delay of a few days, the final three draws for the OCC's weekend cup competitions will be revealed this week, starting today with the Junior Cup
Here's a thought that whilst may not have you spluttering over your elevenses ,will at least make you think - however briefly. In the draw for this year's 2014 RSA Intermediate Cup, there are five teams who played in cup finals in 2013. Civil Service 2 lost the Middle 2 Cup final, Swords 1 and Phoenix 4 battled in the Inter cup final, and Greystones 2 and Slieve Bloom 1 played out the Junior Cup final. They can't all do the same this year, so someone will be disappointed!