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Minority Report: Judge sinks Red' to win

SNOOKER: Former pro player Michael Judge, of the Q Club in Wicklow, recovered from a slow start to win the RIBSA Senior National Championship at the Ivy Rooms, Carlow.

Judge trailed fellow Dubliner Robert Redmond, of Roadstone, by four frames before stopping the slide when he took the fifth 70-15.

He battled his way back into the match to even the score at four frames apiece, before moving into a 5-4 lead.

Redmond took the 10th frame to make it 5-5, before Judge, drawing on all his skill and experience, nailed down the next three to win the title at 8-5.

It was an impressive showing by Redmond, who knocked out Irish No2 Brendan O'Donoghue and Irish No3 Robert Murphy on his way to the final.

On the other side of the draw, Judge put out Irish No1 David Hogan.

* Robert Murphy, John Sutton and Jason Devaney are currently in Poland competing at the European Championships.

SWIMMING: After the coldest spring weather on record, the waters of the Irish Sea are still bone-freezing cold.

For that reason, Half Moon Swimming Club has decided to shorten both their weekend open water races in Killiney today and Bray tomorrow to approximately 1,100 metres.

The races launch the annual sea-swimming season, with 33 races on the Leinster calendar alone.

Next weekend, the action moves to Portmarnock on Saturday for the Garda race and to Sandycove a day later for the Glenalbyn Masters event.

Key events for some of the hardiest people in sport are the 94th Dublin City Liffey Swim on Saturday August 24 and the Dún Laoghaire Harbour Race on Sunday September 8.

Most Leinster races are about 1,600m metres in length, with three longer at about 2,000m, and the 5km and 10km races on Lough Dan incorporating the national championships.

For those who fancy a weekend trip, there are also races on Lough Lene in Co Westmeath; in Curracloe, Co Wexford; on the river Lee in Cork; at Salthill in Galway and in Limerick.

Newcomers are always welcome; see the full calendar at www.leinsteropensea.ie.

TUG OF WAR: Boley from Co Wexford proved that they are the team to beat this season when they won the Leinster 640kg title in Edenderry last weekend.

In the final, the legendary team from Boley, which included a couple of generations from the Kehoe family, proved too strong for Boyneside. It was still an exceptionally good day for the Boynesiders who won three other titles – division 2 men, women's 402kg and mixed 620kg.

All is now set for the opening round of the National Championships at Clonakilty on Sunday June 9, where the men's catchweight is the feature event.

Highlight of the season will be the World Championships at the end of July in Cali, Colombia. Ireland are defending champions at 700kg and have also qualified for the 640kg competition.

SQUASH: Madeline Perry, seeded at No11, made it through to the second round of the British Open in Hull.

She beat English player Emma Beddoes in her opening match, but then lost to No3 seed Omneya Abdel Kawy of Eqypt. Aisling Blake put up a brave battle in her opening round match against Annie Au of Hong Kong, winning the second game but losing 3-1.

In the final, Laura Massaro, a regular visitor to Ireland, beat squash legend Nicol David of Malaysia to take the title. It was a first home win for England in 22 years.

CROQUET: Ireland beat Scotland to regain croquet's Appleton Trophy at the annual international, held over two days, in Carrickmines, Co Dublin. In dry and warm conditions, the Scots took an early lead in the doubles and held on to a one-point lead at the close of play after the singles.

On the second day, the Scots again led after the doubles, but with seven singles games remaining, the Irish dug deep and took the five victories they needed. This included two wins for Irish captain Nathaniel Healy, leaving Alan Looney to score the match winning point.

CANOEING: Neil Fleming of Celbridge Paddlers won the Salmon Leap marathon canoe race held on the Liffey. Fleming, who is based in the USA, beat Salmon Leap pair Gary Mawer and Iomhar Mac Giolla Phádraig.

Elsewhere, it was Salmon Leap all the way with Declan Halton and Maciej Majzchzak pairing up to win the K2 class, and Juliet Sweeney beating Michelle Barry in the women's race.


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