O'Brien and Claffey head close seedings
INTERNATIONAL aces Colin O'Brien and Jenny Claffey head the seedings for this week's Sherry Fitzgerald Irish Close Championships which are under way at Donnybrook LTC, WRITES PADDY HICKEY.
O'Brien was a member of the Ireland squad for the Davis Cup clash with Finland in Dublin in April, and Claffey figured on the Irish team in last month's Fed Cup campaign in Moldova.
Malahide left-hander O'Brien is likely to encounter his chief opposition from last year's Close champion, Dublin-based Georgia native Lazare Kukhalashvili, and Britain 's Edward Seator.
In the women's event, Elm Park 's Claffey will have to contend with the strong challenges of fellow Fed Cup player Rachael Dillon and defending champion Mariyana Levova.
O'Brien opens his campaign today against Carrickmines' Owen Albert Kirk, a 6-3 6-2 winner over Glasnevin's Paul Keoghan, while Claffey tomorrow takes on Ballymena's Kerri Russell who overcame Naas's Megan Campion 7-6 6-7 7-6.