Tennis: Sibling rivalry goes distance
Underdog Ciaran Fitzgerald pushed his big brother Niall all the way in the men’s singles semi-finals at the National Indoors Championships.
Niall (20) went into the family battle between the Greystones pair as a strong favourite at David Lloyd Riverview last night, with his US collegiate circuit experience perceived as a huge plus for him.
But 18-year-old Ciaran’s outstanding play meant Notre Dame University student Niall had to remain on court for a marathon three hours before prevailing 4-6 7-6 (7/5) 6-4.
An upset did materialise in the second men’s singles semi-final when Georgia native Lazare Kukhalashvili overcame No 2 seed John Morrissey 7-5 6-1 after two hours and one minute.
In the women’s singles semifinals, defending Rachael Dillon defeated Fed Cup team-mate Jenny Claffey 6-4 0-6 7-6 (9/7).
In the final, the top-seeded Donnybrook player will face the No 2 seed, Tramore’s Sinead Lohan, who ended the title hopes of Naas’ Grainne O’Neill on an emphatic 6-3 6-1 margin after one hour and and 39 minutes