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Irish to tackle trio in England Juniors make history with title win Masters glory halts Murphy drought Lughnasa land double Peace crowns

HOCKEY: With the World Cup qualifiers less than two months away, the Irish women's hockey squad travel to Bisham Abbey in England for three uncapped matches against Great Britain this weekend. Of the 18 selected, nine are from Leinster, including Railway Union's Emma Smyth, who was given a rest for the recent tests against Belgium. Loreto, with five players selected, have the largest club representation, but they are still managing to hold on to third place on the Leinster League table behind Hermes and Railway Union.

In the men's game, Three Rock Rovers and Monkstown booked their places in the Irish Senior Cup quarter-finals with hard-fought extra time wins over Cookstown and Raphoe respectively. Rovers will be at home to Lisnagarvey on Saturday week, while Glenanne meet Corinthian in an all-Leinster draw. Ulster sides Banbridge and Annadale play each other. In the Leinster Senior Cup quarter-finals, Corinthian beat Three Rock Rovers.



Women's nailbiter has Pleasant end

BADMINTON: Mount Pleasant may have beaten Kadca in the mixed final at the Dublin and District Cup Finals at Whitehall Road, but it was the Mount Pleasant division 2 women's team who produced the closest result of the weekend.

Against Pembroke, the match was drawn 2-2 after four games, with the teams also tied 5-5 on sets and 185-apiece on points. Only after the women took to the court again did Mount Pleasant finally draw ahead at 21-18 in the third set. It wasn't a bad weekend for Pembroke, with their first team beating their seconds in the Division 2 mixed final. In all, 10 division titles were decided in the mixed finals, with a further 10 in both men and women's competitions.



Juniors make history with title win

TABLE TENNIS: Ireland's junior boys' table tennis team have won the Junior British League Premier title for the first time. Over two weekends, the team of Paul McCreery, Sam Hanley, Ashley Robinson and Sam Logue won eight of their matches drawing one and losing one. They finished on 17 points, clear of nearest rivals Waterside on 14 points. Individually, Paul McCreery topped the table with 18 wins and only two losses.



Masters glory halts Murphy drought

SNOOKER: Robert Murphy took his first major title in some time when he won the Irish Masters Snooker title at the Ivy Rooms, Carlow. In a tournament dominated by Dublin and Leinster players, Monkstown club member Murphy beat Alsaa's Robert Redmond 5-0. Murphy had beaten Celbridges's Colm Gilcreest in the semi-final, while Redmond beat Johnny Williams from Maynooth. In the quarter-finals, Gilcreest had put out current Irish No1 Rodney Goggins 3-1. In a tournament of shocks, No2 seed Mario Fernandez lost to junior player Jason Devaney in the last 32, while another junior, Daniel O'Regan, beat Martin McCrudden 3-2.



Lughnasa land double Peace crowns

OLYMPIC HANDBALL: Teams from the Lughnasa handball club in Tallaght won both boys' and girls' titles at the annual Warrington Cup, aka the Anglo-Irish Peace Cup. Wins over English northwest clubs Chester, Cannock and Greater Manchester gave the Lughnasa boys a place in the U17 final. There they again beat Chester 15-7. In the girls' tournament, Lughnasa had easy wins over Cheshire and Manchester and beat a combined team in the final.


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