County 60×30 Senior Open Doubles win for Keeling and Haughton
Colin Keeling capped his eagerly awaited return to competitive action with another county senior championship winners medal when he partnered Paddy Haughton to a fully merited success over St. Mary’s club mates Paul Carty and Matthew Hynes at Emmet Place on Monday last.
The showcase event of Wexford doubles handball was dealt a huge blow in the days leading up to the match with the news that Tommy Hynes was ruled out following an injury picked up in training and his absence from the final robbed the event of much of its lustre.
Matthew Hynes replaced his brother in this all St. Mary’s decider but through no fault of his what followed was a match that failed to ignite and which was for the most part devoid of the type of competitive atmosphere normally associated with the top doubles grade in Wexford.
The first game did ebb and flow quite a bit and for periods it looked like Carty and Hynes might edge it, but Keeling controlled the vital areas and showed his experience to pass and kill when the opportunities were there. He was ably assisted by Haughton and it was they who finished the stronger to take the first game by 21-18.
Keeling tired a little in the second causing Haughton to switch to the left but instead of this weakening the pairing it was Haughton who took on the responsibility of playmaker to great effect. By contrast the normally combative Carty was not enjoying playing on the left hand side of the court and with Hynes coming under constant pressure on the opposite side, the scoreboard was kept ticking over in favour of Keeling and Haughton. The final winning margin of 21-9 was a true reflection of their superiority and for differing reasons will have greatly pleased the winners. For Keeling it will provide encouragement that he can still ‘mix it with the big boys’ when his fitness improves while in Haughton’s case it provided further evidence that when it comes to doubles play he can hold his own in any company.
Holly Hynes, St. Mary’s ensured a gold medal for her clan when she enjoyed a comfortable victory over Roisin Walsh, St. Josephs in the women’s junior singles decider. It was a terribly impressive performance by the winner and although Roisin battled hard she was unable to stem the tide.