County juvenile doubles finals report

REPORT compiled by Juvenile Committee Chairperson and Secretary Robert Doyle and Barry McWilliams

The 2016 County 40×20 Juvenile Doubles Finals kicked off on Saturday evening in Coolgreany and continued on Sunday morning with an early start in St. Josephs Community Centre and Horeswood, with a big attendance at all venues.

GU16 Lauren Flanagan/Leanne Boland (COG) dft Emma Sweeney/Eva Creane (STJ) 2-1
First up on Saturday evening was the GU16 between Lauren Flanagan/Leanne Boland (COG) and Emma Sweeney/Eva Creane (STJ). These girls are no strangers on the court and a close contest was expected. The first game was very close all the way but it was Lauren and Leanne who just took it. Emma and Eva fought back to take the second at their ease. The tie breaker was another close game with some great rallies and all four girls playing some excellent handball. It was Lauren and Leanne who came out on top however to take the title 2-1.

BU13 Mark Doyle/Conor Murphy (STJ) dft Scott Leonard Dixon/Ryan Boland (COG) 2-0
Next on the programme were local boys Scott Leonard Dixon/Ryan Boland against Mark Doyle/Conor Murphy (STJ). It was the locals who got off to a great start with some excellent serves and there were plenty of long rallies in the game but it was Mark and Conor who took game one. Scott and Ryan found it a bit harder to keep control of Mark and Conor in the second game but they never gave up trying. The St. Josephs boys had that bit more strength however and took the title 2-0.

BU10 Ruairi Ennis/Rory Gilbert (STJ) dft Liam Parnell/Odhran Kehoe (BAH) 2-0
The first final in St Josephs was the BU10 where Ruairi Ennis/Rory Gilbert (STJ) took on Liam Parnell/Odhran Kehoe (BAH). This was a fantastic game from four of the County’s up and coming stars. The serving and the ‘gets’ from these young boys was absolutely excellent. It was Ruairi and Rory who were just that little bit stronger than Liam and Odhran and took the title 2-0.

GU12 Jodie Keeling/Elizabeth Walsh (STJ) dft Ellie Murphy-O’Gorman/Sophie Kelly (STJ) 2-0
Next up were the GU12 and this was an all St. Josephs affair with Elizabeth Walsh/Jodie Keeling up against their club mates, Ellie Murphy-O’Gorman/Sophie Kelly. Elizabeth and Jodie got off to a great start with some fabulous serves which Ellie and Sophie found difficult to return. When Ellie and Sophie settled in they got some great serves themselves but Elizabeth and Jodie were that little bit stronger and took the game 2-0.

BU11 Bobby Doyle/Jack Murphy (STJ) dft Shane Kehoe/Conor Creane (STY) 2-1
Next up on the programme was the BU11 final between St.Marys Shane Kehoe/Conor Creane and St.Josephs Bobby Doyle/Jack Murphy this was a really exciting game, Shane and Conor had excellent serves in the first game and Bobby and Jack just had no answer to them. Second game was the other way around with Shane and Conor not being able to return Bobby and Jacks fantastic serving. In the tiebreaker both pairs of boys had found their feet, they had long and hard rallies with some great ‘gets’ and kills from all four boys, But in the end it was eventually Bobby and Jack who just got over the line to take the title 2-1.

GU13 April Moran/Emily Moran (BAM) dft Becky O’Neill/Danielle Kinsella (BAM) 2-1
GU13 was another all club affair with Ballymitty girls April and Emily Moran up against clubmates Becky O’Neill and Danielle Kinsella. T first game was very close and exciting and could have gone either way but it was Danielle and Becky who just snatched it. The second game and the tiebreaker went to April and Emily when they got to grips with Danielle and Becky’s excellent serves. All four girls showed great skill and talent throughout the game. April and Emily took the title 2-1.

BU14 Diarmuid Moore/Richard Lawlor (STJ) dft Dean O’Neill/Dillan Scott (BAM) 2-0
The final game of the day in St. Josephs was BU14 between Ballymittys Dean O’Neill/Dillan Scott and St. Josephs Richard Lawlor/Diarmuid Moore. First of all great praise should be given to Dillan who stepped in to partner Dean when Dean’s usual partner Michael Gaynor couldn’t make it due to illness. First time out in a county match is never easy, but to do it on a such a big occasion as finals day is extra difficult. Well done Dillan on your first appearance in a Co. championship. Diarmuid and Richard are a very strong pairing to come up against and Dean and Dillan found the Josephs boys strength and experience tough, but hard-hitting Dean and newcomer Dillan never gave up. It was Diarmuid and Richard who took the title 2-0.

BU15 Páidí O’Shea/Jake Kelly (TLU) dft Noel Connors/Paddy Connors (NER) 2-1
The first game on the programme in Horeswood was the BU15 where the Templeudigan pair raced into an early lead and game one looked all but over before the New Ross pair had struck a ball. A side out and some great passing and kills by Noel and Paddy closed the gap however and when Páidí and Jake regained serve with a still considerable lead the result still looked secure. They only managed one more ace in this game however as Noel and Paddy closed out game one with the minimum to spare. The second game and tiebreaker started the same as game one with Páidí and Jake taking a considerable early lead and Noel and Paddy closing the gap. Some great killing, passing and smart roof play ensured they never closed the gap however and they finished out the match in style.

BU16 Cian Kehoe/Josh McMahon (STJ) dft Robert Cogley/James Murphy (BAM) 2-0
With both Cian Kehoe and Josh McMahon stepping up an age grade, the Ballymitty pair of Robert Cogley and James Murphy must have been confident of a result in the BU16. This was not the case however as some fabulous power serving by Cian on the right made it difficult for Ballymitty to return. Anything which was returned saw both Cian and the recently crowned U16 singles champion, Josh, lining up to swiftly put it away. End of rally and end of match as Cian and Josh closed it out with ease.

BU17 Anthony Butler/Enda Minogue (BAH) dft Patrick Boland/Jason O’Neill (TLU) 2-0
In the final game of the day, the old rivalry between Ballyhogue and Templeudigan was resumed. Patrick was on the wrong side of the result in the singles final against Anthony and was determined to make amends. This started at a blistering pace with some excellent kills and rekills by all four. It was point for point in the early exchanges until 8-8, when Anthony and Enda started to pull away. Some great kills and passing shots by Anthony and great retrievals and some flat back wall kills by Enda saw them close out the first with a bit to spare, despite the best efforts of Patrick and Jason who played some great ball. The second started in the same fashion and was a great spectacle. With some flat roll outs from Patrick, left and right hand, and great right side play by Jason, it looked as though they might have found their rhythm, but they never played well as a team despite good individual performances. Anthony and Enda played some fantastic handball throughout and some great teamwork and composure under pressure saw them take the title in two straight.

BU12 Ryan Moran/Jack Egan (BAM)
GU14 Niamh Miller/Clodagh Dempsey (BAM)