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Ireland a hit for Six

TABLE TENNIS: A first ever victory for the Irish women proved the highlight of the Six Nations International in Basildon, England.

The team of Amanda Mogey and Ashley Givan proved unstoppable, dismissing Wales in a tense match that went all the way after victories over Guernsey and Isle of Man.

Next up, they conquered the might of England, before beating Scotland to ensure that the title came to Ireland for the first ever time.

In the men's tournament, the Irish team of Paul McCreery and Ashley Robinson did well to beat Wales, but then lost 3-0 to England. They then beat Scotland to take the silver medals on a great weekend for Irish table tennis.

In the individual competition, Paul McCreery progressed to the semi-finals while Amanda Mogey made the quarter-finals and stand-in Irish captain Gavan Maguire won the consolation final.

HOCKEY: Dublin will host a men's Olympic eliminator next March, boosting Irish hopes of qualifying a team for London. With home advantage, the Irish must beat teams from Korea, Malaysia, Russia, Chile and Ukraine at UCD.

For their eliminator, the Irish women's team travel to Belgium, also in March where the top seed is Spain. They will also taking on a much-improved side from the host nation, Belgium, as well as Russia, France and Mexico.

As part of their preparation, the Irish squad travels to Argentina next month for an 11-day tour, playing India and South Africa as well as the host nation.

BADMINTON: A place at next year's Olympic Games is at stake for Irish No 1 Chloe Magee when she plays in next month's Yonex Irish International Championships in Lisburn.

Magee, currently ranked 49 in the world, needs to make the quarter-finals if she is to book her place in London.

Also hoping to qualify are Scott Evans, who made the final in 2008 and is currently world ranked 72 and Sam Magee, who is playing mixed doubles with sister Chloe; the pair are currently world ranked 35th.

ROWING: UCD's David Neale won the men's open title at the Irish Indoor Championships in Trinity College's sports centre.

Neale's time of 6 minutes 1.5 seconds was outside the Irish record of 5:59.3, set by Cork oarsman Eamonn Joyce a few years ago. After a break from the sport, Joyce was back in action last weekend and finished second, although his time of 6:12.6 was well outside his previous best.

Making it a UCD double was Amy Bulman who won the women's title with a time of 7:20.1.

VOLLEYBALL: Victories over Santry and Naas Cobras should put defending champions Aer Lingus top of the women's premiership next weekend.

At the moment, Aer Lingus lie third on the table behind DVC and Naas Cobras, but have a crucial match in hand.

A lot less clear is the men's premiership, with Aer Lingus hit by a number of retirements but still managing to beat arch rivals Ballymum Patriots in their opening match.

Aer Lingus face defending league champions Munster Thunder next weekend.


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