Busy times on handball courts with provincial and county action and Gael Linn mixed doubles
Busy times in 40x20 handball courts as the 2015 provincial adult championships kicks in. We also have provincial Gael Linn Mixed Doubles in Mitchelstown on Sunday, while on the domestic front the Mallow Credit Union juvenile county championship narrows down to finals over the weekend and coming week.
In adult 40x20 county championship the last of the finals involving Munster championship qualification will be played.
The Munster championship fixtures for Ladies Senior Singles & Doubles and Men's Singles and Doubles were issued on Monday with Ladies Senior Singles kick starting the programme next Wednesday in Broadford at 7pm where Kerry's Ashley Prendiville will take on Limerick's Martina McMahon. Both semi-finals are scheduled for Friday, January 16 commencing at 7pm with Ballydesmond's Catriona Casey taking on the winner of Ashley Prendiville v Martina McMahon. Aishling O'Keeffe, Ballydesmond, will play Kerry's Maria Daly in the second semi-final. The final is scheduled for Broadford on Sunday, January 18 at 1pm.
The Men's Senior Singles also commences on Wednesday, January 14 with Shane Hedigan, Liscarroll, playing Clare's Colin Crehan in Broadford. The Men's four quarter-finals will be played on Saturday, January 17, with the semi-finals in the afternoon and the final on Sunday in Broadford at 2pm.
There will be a break of two weeks to the start of doubles, with both Men's and Ladies down for decision on the weekend of February 7/8. Most other grades of provincial championship are due to commence next week with fixtures for all grades due to be issued this Wednesday/Thursday.
There are some very busy and exciting times in the handball courts with the standard of the players in Munster counties now very high. There promises to be some very exciting games during the next two months, and no grade of provincial championship will be won easily.
Next Sunday will see the return of inter county handball to the Mitchelstown venue wi Provincial Gael Linn Mixed Doubles down for decision commencing at 11am, Cork will be represented by Kilworth and Mallow, the Kilworth pair will be Samantha O'Donnell/Stevie O'Donnell, while Mallow will have Sarah O'Malley/Cian Flaherty on duty, all six Munster counties will be competing with each fielding two pairings. It should provide an excellent afternoon of skilful handball.
The weekend will be a busy one in the Mallow Credit Union sponsored County Juvenile championship with quarter-finals and semi-finals down for decision, at one side of the draw Mallow take on Boherbue in a semi-final in Mallow on Saturday.
At the other side of the draw the winners of Kilworth v Ballydesmond play the winners of Liscarroll v Fermoy with these semi-finals going ahead on Saturday and Sunday in Kilworth and Liscarroll, it will be an important weekend for all involved as clubs strive to get as many players as they can through to finals and keep alive their hopes of winning the Mallow Credit Union Perpetual Trophy and the county juvenile championship title.
Liscarroll was certainly the place to be last week for handball purists as the club hosted Munster Open in both 13 and Under and 15 and Under for Boys and Girls, The action commenced on December 27 and following six intense days of continuous handball the programme was completed on Thursday January 1. Over one hundred boys and girls competed as players from all four provinces made the journey to Liscarroll to compete in what is now acknowledged as one of the top juvenile tournaments in the country and being played at this time of year the young players use it to kick start their provincial and All-Ireland ambitions for the coming season.
In 13 and Under semi-finals Cian O'Driscoll, Mallow, defeated Conor Downes, Tuamgraney, with Jack Holden, Kilkenny, defeating Mark Rodgers, Tuamgraney, in the second semi-final, Cian O'Driscoll went on to take the spoils defeating Jack Holden in the final. In 15 and Under semi-finals Tiernan Agnew, Kilkishen, Clare defeated David Walsh, Mallow and in the second semi-final Tadgh O'Neill, Mallow defeated Jerome Cahill, Lahorna, Tipperary, Tiernan Agnew went on to take the spoils defeating Tadgh O'Neill in the final.
In Girls Niamh Heffernan, Galway won U-13 with Sinead Meagher, Tipperary winning U15. Great credit is due to the officers and members of Liscarroll club for the huge effort put in to making this week of handball such a success.