Sunday 21 January 2018

In brief: Kennedy to play hardball with Lynch in Singles final

Handball: Former 'big alley' king Eoin Kennedy of Dublin will meet Kerry's Dominick Lynch in the final of the Moriarty Group All-Ireland Senior Hardball Singles Championship.

Left-hander Lynch saw off Mayo hard-hitter Vinny Moran, 21-18, in the third game of a slugfest on Friday night, while Kennedy was far too strong for Mayo's Joe McCann in his semi yesterday, winning 21-4, 21-4.

The methodical Kennedy, a former hardball champion, was just too consistent for McCann in a clash of styles, and will start the final as favourite.

Meanwhile, Stephen Cooney, also of Mayo, celebrated his return from a six-month injury lay-off with an impressive 15-2, 15-3 final win over Armagh veteran James Doyle in the final of the Williamstown Men's Open in county Galway. Pauline Gallagher took the Ladies Open title with a tiebreaker win over Aoife McCarthy.


Three-time National Rally champion Niall Maguire from Monaghan and his co-driver Conor Foley scored a start-to-finish victory in the Hotel Kilmore Cavan Stages Rally, their Impreza finishing the nine stages almost two minutes clear of nearest challengers Rodney Wilton and Conor McMahon in an Escort.

Third-placed Trevor Bustard was best of the Production cars in his Lancer Evo, with Martin Swinburne narrowly winning the Junior Rally by just three seconds from Adrian Sweeney. Derek Deane came out best in the opening round of the Five Star Catering National Autocross Championship at Ballycumber, with defending Munster champion Peter Falvey the winner on both days of the Skibbereen Norman Giles Memorial Autotest weekend at Bandon.


England's Toby Tree clinched the Welsh Amateur Stroke-Play title at Conwy yesterday, beating Jamie Dick in a tense play-off.

The tournament was blighted by heavy rain, which saw the first day's play abandoned on Friday. The two young talented stars were tied on 14-under par after three rounds, with the sudden death play-off taking place over holes 11 and 18 in the pouring rain.

The pair halved the 11th in four, but a mistake from Dick in his approach to the 18th saw Tree capitalise as the Chichester star held his nerve to par, while Dick failed to hole from four feet.

Castle's Daniel Holland was the only Irishman to make the 45-man cut on Saturday, carding an opening round of 72. And Holland carded another par 72 in his second round yesterday after recovering from being two-over through seven, as the 24-year-old produced birdies at holes 8 and 15.

FORMER Irish elite champion Tommy McCarthy won on his pro debut in Yorkshire, England on Saturday. The Belfast fighter, ranked number nine in the World by AIBA before switching codes, stopped Lithuania's Rolandas Cesna in the third round.

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