Saturday 20 January 2018

Sport in brief: Barry books last-four spot

James McGee who is playing in a US challenger this week
James McGee who is playing in a US challenger this week

TENNIS: NATIONAL No 2 Sam Barry had to withstand a roller-coaster second set before clinching a semi-final place in the Irish Open at Fitzwilliam LTC.

In the absence of James McGee, who is playing in a US Challenger this week, Barry carries the home hopes of emulating the Castleknock man's title win in 2011.

The 21-year-old Limerick native dropped only two games in the opening set against Maxime Tchoutakian yesterday.

No 4 seed Barry broke the 19-year-old twice in that opening set, but it was a different matter entirely in the following set.

Despite a brave effort from the Frenchman, however, Barry prevailed on a 6-2 7-6 (7/3) scoreline and will now face top seed Albano Olivetti today.

Meanwhile, top seed Roger Federer suffered a shock 6-3 6-4 defeat to Germany's Daniel Brands in his opening match at his home Swiss Open yesterday – the latest setback for the former world No 1.

Cricket

Ireland's women's team have moved another step towards next year's Twenty20 World Cup in Bangladesh after advancing to the semi-finals of the qualifiers with a 77-run victory over Canada.

Having beaten Japan, it is Ireland's second win of the group stages and they are set to face Pakistan in next week's semi-final at YMCA.

Ireland won the toss and decided to bat. They made 146-7 with Malahide's Claire Shillington leading the way as she made 81 from just 60 deliveries.

In their reply, Canada never looked like making Ireland's total and were bowled out for just 69.

Even if Ireland lose to Pakistan, they could still make the World Cup if they win the third-place play-off.

Hockey

THE Irish men's team were run ragged by Olympic champions Germany on the opening day of the Hamburg Masters tournament.

The Green Machine stuttered to a 6-0 defeat after being forced to make a late change to their line-up.

Ireland were on the back foot by half-time thanks to a Marco Miltkau brace and the hosts added more goals through Oskar Deecke, Florian Fuchs, Thilo Stralkowski and Mats Grambusch.

Andrew Meredith's vanquished side meet Holland tomorrow and then England on Sunday.

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