Ark­low play­ers shine in rac­quet­ball cham­pi­onships

Bray People - - Sport -

THE ALL-IRE­LAND Dou­bles and Over­age Rac­quet­ball Cham­pi­onships were held in Ark­low last week­end with play­ers from all over Ire­land trav­el­ling to com­pete.

The Ark­low club were well rep­re­sented in ev­ery event and ended up winning their fair share of the cov­eted medals.

In the Men’s Open Dou­bles divi­sion lo­cal play­ers Joe Far­rell and Jimmy Gan­non made it to the semi-fi­nal only to be beaten by fel­low club mate Adam Neary and his part­ner Noel O’Cal­laghan (Fer­moy), who then went on to win the event beat­ing Fer­moy duo Liam Hughes and Pa­trick Han­ley.

Seánie Fitzger­ald and Paddy Dodd made it to the fi­nal of the Men’s Novice dou­bles where they were nar­rowly beaten by Pádraig Ry­der (New­port) and his part­ner James Bol­ger (New Ross).

The Men’s 30+ Sin­gles saw Joe Far­rell bat­tle it out in the semi-fi­nal against Jimmy Gan­non to win his spot in the fi­nal where he de­feated last year’s win­ner Noel O’Cal­laghan (Fer­moy) in two straight games.

The Men’s 40+ Sin­gles was an all Ark­low fi­nal, which saw Michael Mur­phy and John Fitzger­ald bat­tle it out in a nail bit­ing tie-breaker. In the end it was John who came out on top winning 11-7.

In Ladies Open Dou­bles Toni Neary and her part­ner Elma Gib­ney (Moy­lagh) fought off all the other com­pe­ti­tion to come out the vic­tors, beat­ing Ber­nadette O’Cal­laghan and Donna Ry­der (New­port) in the fi­nal.

The BCD Dou­bles fi­nal will be played at a later date and will see two Ark­low pairs bat­tle it out for gold. Thomas Fitzger­ald and John Fitzger­ald will play Brian Byrne and Michael Mur­phy at a later date to see who will take the cup.

When all games have been played, Ark­low play­ers will have won five out of the pos­si­ble ten sil­ver medals and six out of the pos­si­ble ten gold medals, which surely ce­ments the Ark­low club as one of the strong­est in Ire­land.

The Moy­lagh Open was held the week­end of the 7th and 8th Fe­bru­ary, sev­eral Ark­low play­ers trav­elled to Meath to com­pete but af­ter a suc­cess­ful open­ing day on Satur­day, the re­main­der of the com­pe­ti­tion had to be aban­doned af­ter heavy overnight snow pre­vented many of the play­ers arriving at the venue on Sun­day morn­ing.

The Men’s Open Sin­gles had pro­gressed to the semi-fi­nals stages with Adam Neary be­ing the only Ark­low player left in the com­pe­ti­tion. Adam was also the only Ark­low player left in the Men’s Open dou­bles with his part­ner Noel O’Cal­laghan (Fer­moy). In the Ladies Open Dou­bles, Toni Neary and Orla Byrne had yet to play their semi-fi­nal. John Fitzger­ald and Brian Byrne were still go­ing strong in the Men’s C/D/Novice Dou­bles and Michael Mur­phy was the last Ark­low man stand­ing in the Men’s 40+Sin­gles. The or­gan­is­ers, Moy­lagh Rac­quet­ball Club may set a new date for the re­main­ing matches but this has still to be de­cided.

The next com­pe­ti­tion is the All-Ire­land Sin­gles and Ju­nior Even cham­pi­onships which will be held in Kingscourt, Co. Ca­van on the week­end of the 7th and 8th March.

Ju­nior coach­ing is back on this week­end.

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