Tuesday 16 January 2018

O'Donoghue fires Ireland past Welsh

Hockey

A goal on 30 minutes from UCD hotshot Shane O'Donoghue gave Ireland a 1-0 win against Wales in Barcelona.

O'Donoghue should have had a second as the Irish continued to press but his second-half effort from the penalty spot hit a post.

The result gives the Irish six points out of six at the four-nation event, but their true mettle will be tested today when they tackle hosts Spain.

Andy Murray celebrated his birthday with a battling victory over tricky left-hander Jurgen Melzer to reach the quarter-finals of the Rome Masters, where he will face Rafael Nadal.

Murray, who turned 27 yesterday, was broken in the opening game and faced several other nervy moments, but managed to take the first set to a tie-break, where he won 15 of the next 16 points on his way to a 7-6 (7/1) 6-4 win.

Corner-forward Colm O'Donovan led the way as Medtronic from Galway captured the All-Ireland inter-firm football title by beating Cork Gardai 3-15 to 1-13 in Salthill.

The Corofin clubman shot 2-5 as his side came from behind to defeat opponents for whom Kerry star Aidan O'Mahony was outstanding in the middle of the field.

Irish showjumpers got off to a great start ahead of a double-header of Nations Cups in France and Denmark today, when Dermott Lennon finished first and second in Speed classes at La Baule, and Michael Duffy won the opener at Odense.

Lennon and Vampire won the Prix Echo at the 5-Star French fixture. With Loughview Lou-Lou the Banbridge rider was almost two seconds off the pace in second in the Speed class in which Billy Twomey finished third with Tinka's Serenade.

At Odense, Galway man Duffy and Eminent won the 1.35m Speed. Capt Michael Kelly was third on Mullentine.

The results augur well for today's Nations Cup tests which are part of the Furusiyya series.

As a leg of Europe Division 1, La Baule is the big one and Chef d'Equipe Robert Splaine will be hoping his crack side of Denis Lynch (All Star), Cameron Hanley (Antello Z), Cian O'Connor (Quidam's Cherie) and Twomey (Diaghilev) will pick up points towards the October final.

The team at 3-Star Odense is Thomas Ryan (Caribo), Duffy (Murchu), Capt Kelly (Annestown) and Niall Talbot (Nicos de la Cense).

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