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Newry City's leading scorer Darragh Hanaphy (Picture: Matt Mackey/


NEWRY CITY and Lisburn Distillery meet tonight in the first leg of this season's promotion/relegation play-off at New Grosvenor Stadium (kick-off 7:45pm).

With a Premiership place the ultimate prize the stakes are high on what is traditionally one of the most highly charged nights of the season, great for the neutrals but agony for the fans, players and officials of the participating clubs - and this is only the first leg!

For Newry, tonight's game is yet another crucial outing on what has been a truly memorable journey for Pat McGibbon's men which has already brought the Mid-Ulster Cup to The Showgrounds and a place in the Irish Cup semi-finals.

And it's not over yet either, as if the play-offs aren't enough they also have the Coca-Cola Intermediate Cup final to contest next Monday!

The Whites find themselves in this position after losing out in a three-way battle to avoid 11th spot in the Premiership with Glenavon and Dungannon Swifts and is a complete contrast to the elation of lifting the League Cup just over a year ago.

But, for tonight, none of what has gone before or awaits ahead will matter. It's all about the performance on the night and doing enough to hold the advantage going into the return on Friday.

Tonight's referee is Raymond Hetherington, assisted by David Hamilton and Mervyn Adamson with Tim Marshall fulfilling the 4th official role.