Monday 27 January 2020

Glenanne, UCD claim titles

Hockey: Yesterday's finish to the Men's and Women's Leinster Senior Leagues resulted in Glenanne coming from behind to pip Monkstown in the men's showdown, while the women's front-runners Railway Union were denied their moment of glory when held to a 2-2 draw by Hermes.

The result leaves them level with UCD on 46 points, with College clinching the title on matches won.

Monkstown went into their head to head with visitors Glenanne needing only a draw to win the league pennant to bridge a gap of 30 years. Glenanne, however, needing nothing less than victory, led 2-0 at half time and ran out 3-1 winners, their goals coming from Brendan Parsons, Jonathan Kane and Stephen Brownlow.

Monkstown, however, could muster some consolation should they come out on top against Pembroke Wanderers in today's Leinster Cup final.

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GOLF: Thorbjorn Olesen took a three-shot lead into the final round of the Sicilian Open after firing a superb 67 in blustery conditions at the Verdura Golf & Spa Resort.

The 22-year-old Dane recovered from a bogey at the sixth to sink four birdies and an eagle at the par-five 14th and move to 12-under for the tournament.

Andrew Parr and Nicolas Colsaerts of Belgium are Olesen's nearest challengers on nine-under.

Lloyd Saltman heads a group of three players on eight-under, the Scot going round in 69 with birdies at the second, 11th and 13th.

Soren Kjeldsen carded a one-under 71 to join Saltman alongside Peter Lawrie, who had a second consecutive round of 72 after opening with a 64 on Thursday.

Lawrie and Kjeldsen had been among a group of six players tied for the lead overnight, along with David Lynn, Jamie Donaldson, Maarten Lafeber and Pelle Edberg.

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gaelic games: A lightning start ensured that Holy Trinity College, Cookstown recorded a comfortable 2-14 to 2-5 victory over Clonakilty Community College in the All-Ireland Vocational Schools SF 'A' semi-final at St Conleth's Park, Newbridge.

With Declan McClure and James McGahan in fine shooting form from play and frees, Peter Canavan's crew were seven points up after 10 minutes. That advantage was 11 when powerful John Loughran found the net at the second attempt in the 18th minute.

Jack O'Mahony got his side's opening score when pointing a free two minutes later and Ian Falvey cracked home a brilliant goal, but Clonakilty still trailed by 1-12 to 1-2 at half-time.

The second half was marginally better for Clon as they managed to slow the Holy Trinity scoring rate considerably. McGahan did score a goal for the Cookstown boys soon after the resumption, though, and that was more than enough to confirm the result, despite Jonathan Leahy's late goal at the other end.

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CRICKET: Ireland's Trent Johnston has broken back into the top 20 of the Reliance ICC Twenty20 International rankings for bowlers after the 37-year-old fast-medium bowler helped his side to victory in the ICC World Twenty20 qualifier.

The strapping right-armed bowler took seven wickets for Ireland during the event last month and consequently has been rewarded with a leap of seven places to now occupy 15th in the bowling rankings, which are currently topped by England spinner Graeme Swann.

Irish bowlers George Dockrell and Boyd Rankin claimed new career-best rankings. The 27-year-old Rankin has risen 16 places to 28th, his highest ranking to date, while left-arm spinner Dockrell is now in 24th place after he snaffled six T20 International wickets.

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racing: Epsom Derby-winning rider Mickael Barzalona steered Monterosso to victory in the $10m Dubai World Cup at Meydan.

He led a famous one-two for Sheikh Mohammed's Godolphin operation and trainer Mahmood Al Zarooni with Capponi second.

Planteur, trained by Marco Botti, was third and the Aidan O'Brien-trained favourite So You Think fourth.

Earlier, Cirrus Des Aigles gamely held St Nicholas Abbey to land the spoils in the Dubai Sheema Classic.

St Nicholas Abbey came with a rattling late bid for Aidan O'Brien under his son, Joseph, but last year's Champion Stakes hero stuck to his task to take the Group One prize. "He has run a very good race and Joseph did a good job on him,'' said O'Brien.

Daddy Long Legs went a long way to booking his Kentucky Derby ticket as O'Brien struck in the UAE Derby.

Ridden by Colm O'Donoghue, the American-bred Daddy Long Legs was sent into the lead as the field turned for home and held as apparent first string Wrote, with Ryan Moore on board, could never strike a blow and had to settle for minor honours with Yang Tse Kiang filling second spot.

"That was the plan, to come here with the two of them and then see if we had a Kentucky Derby contender,'' said O'Brien. "The lads (Coolmore) will speak about it but you'd be looking that way with him at the moment.''

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Richard Fahey achieved a long-held ambition when finally landing the William Hill Lincoln at Doncaster yesterday with Brae Hill.

The Malton handler has had numerous horses placed in recent years, including Brae Hill 12 months ago, which beat all bar Sweet Lightning.

Back to exactly the same handicap mark, despite subsequently winning the Bunbury Cup at Newmarket, Brae Hill was providing Tony Hamilton with the biggest victory of his career.

Prominent throughout, Brae Hill (25/1) got a break on the field with over a furlong to run but Mull Of Killough, in the rear early, flew home and closed to within a short head with Fury in third place.

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ATHLETICS: David Cussen continued his meteoric rise when the Old Abbey AC athlete smashed one of the longest-standing records in the book when he cleared 1.97 metres to win the under 17 long jump on the Under Aged Woodies DIY Indoor events at the Nenagh Stadium.

This broke the 13-year-old mark of 1.96m set in 1999 by Kilkenny's Adrian O'Dwyer, who went on to represent Ireland in the event at the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

Cussen then went on to complete a double when winning the long jump with a leap of 6.33m.

There was also a record in the under 18 long jump when Eoin O'Carroll (Tralee Harriers) won with a leap of 6.83m.

The shot putt also came in for a new mark with Sean Breathnach's long-standing under-17 record broken by John Kelly of Finn Valley with a putt of 15.87m. Breathnach also lost his under 19 record to Paul Collins of Westmeath.

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cycling: Eugene Murtagh, of Stagg Cycles/Lucan, had sufficient energy in the bunch sprint to land the spoils in the Harry Reynolds Memorial yesterday.

First junior was Danny Bruton who, of late, has been making waves in his particular category.

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TENNIS: James Cluskey has provided Ireland with a major Davis Cup boost ahead of this week's relegation showdown against Egypt in Cairo.

Cluskey and India's Purav Raja, the top seeds, came up trumps on a 6-7 (10/12) 6-4 10/2 (champions' tie-break) scoreline against Italian duo Andrea Agazzi and Enrico Iannuzzi in the final of the ITF Futures event in Cividino, Italy.

It was the first doubles world-ranking title for the 25-year-old Dubliner since he teamed up with South Africa's Jean Andersen in the Futures event in Forbach, France last September.

Following that success, Cluskey finished doubles runner-up for the next four weeks on the trot -- all in France -- twice when partnered by Andersen, and once with Limerick's Sam Barry and France's Alexandre Sidorenko.

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