Wednesday 29 March 2017

In brief: Mixed day for Ruddock's U-20s

Rugby

New Ireland U-20 coach Mike Ruddock oversaw a mixed performance from his charges in their 29-10 victory over Italy U-20 at Donnybrook yesterday.

Leinster Academy wing Sam Coghlan-Murray was the star of the show in the first-half as he weighed in with two tries, the first from five yards, the second from 50 as the home side showed plenty of sparkle to lead 29-10 at the interval.

The Irish were left without the ball for much of the second-half as the deterioration in the weather, coupled with a multitude of replacements, saw no additions to the scoreboard.

Golf

IRISH PGA Champion David Mortimer squeezed into a tie for seventh on two-under after a final round 72 in the 36-hole Srixon PGA Play-offs at Little Aston left him five strokes off the lead.

Scotland's Greg Hutcheon beat the English duo of Richard O'Brien and James Harris to the £2000 first prize in sudden death. Waterville's David Higgins tied ninth on one-under after his 72 yesterday, while Damien Mooney from Belfast shot 74 for a share of 19th on four-over.

Tennis

COLIN O'BRIEN yesterday turned things around in amazing fashion to nail down a semi-final place in a world ranking event for the first time in almost five months.

The eight-seeded Dubliner was completely on the back foot in the opening set of his quarter-final clash with Britain's No 2 seed Marcus Willis in the ITF Men's Futures event in Heraklion, Crete.

But subsequently in the all left-hander clash the Malahide man really got to grips with his game, and, with his penetrating serve winning him a succession of points, he went on to dump out Willis on a 2-6 6-1 6-1 scoreline.

Today, the Davis Cup representative bids to take another British scalp, with No 3 seed Sean Thornley providing the opposition.

Rowing

The best-ever performance by Ireland's paralympic rowers at the world championships in New Zealand fell short of a medal in yesterday's finals.

Anne Marie McDaid, Sarah Caffrey, Shane Ryan and Kevin du Tout, with cox Helen Arbuthnot, had already made history as the first Irish adaptive crew to reach a world final.

However, in the end, experience ruled the water as Canada came through to beat Great Britain, with Germany third and the irish fifth.

The regatta has also proved a personal milestone for Derry's Karol Doherty, who equalled his performance of earlier in the season in Slovenia, when he finished second in the 'B' final to place eighth overall.

"I've improved a lot through the week and learned a lot -- I suppose I keep learning every time I go out racing," he enthused.

Irish Independent

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