Carey faces Gribben in All-Ireland showdown
By Seamus Ó Tuama
Tony Carey beat Tony Dunlea by two bowls in the Munster veteran final at Kilcorney on Monday to set up an All-Ireland final meeting with Oliver Gribben, who retained his Ulster title on the same evening.
A massive first shot gave Carey almost a bowl on Dunlea. He followed up with two more good throws to Cooney’s where he had a full bowl. He was down to Coleman’s Bridge in another three where he was close to two in front. He had a second bowl at Cullinane’s. Dunlea brought the lead under two in the next exchange. Carey was two in front again at the novice line and held that lead to the finish.
He qualified for the final by beating Jerry Murphy in the final of the Junior section at Curraheen. He won the opening tip by 40m and led to light at the first bend. Murphy missed Ryan’s and Carey went on to raise a bowl at the bridge. Murphy matched him up the hill, but Carey held most of his lead. Murphy missed a chance to close the gap at the riding school and again at Richard’s lane. Carey looked vulnerable after a poor shot towards Lane’s, but Murphy just beat the tip. Carey secured his win with his bowl to Jimmy’s cross, but Murphy was very unlucky to have his reply blocked.
Oliver Gribben won in Ulster against Pat McQuaid on the Rock Road. Gribben led by almost a bowl to the diamond and got another big shot to the last bend to seal victory.
Nicola O’Sullivan beat Lorraine Hurley in the last shot of the Munster Intermediate women’s final at the Pike on Monday. Hurley won the first two tips. O’Sullivan won the next six and was unlucky not to make White’s Cross with her seventh, which would have given her a bowl of odds. After another two Hurley had close to a bowl. O’Sullivan cut the lead to five metres with a brilliant bowl over the bridge. There was less than a metre between them at Draper’s. Hurley got the better of two good shots from there, but was left with her next two and O’Sullivan gained 30m odds. Hurley missed the line with her last shot, to hand victory to O’Sullivan.
In the men’s Intermediate championship, PJ Cooney had a good last shot win over Gavin Twohig at Templemartin. Cooney was a bowl clear at the Schoolhouse cross. Twohig opened the stone-field bend with a great shot to cut the lead to 50m. Twohig got a brilliant bowl that missed the pub cross by just 100m. Cooney did even better by reaching the cross to raise a bowl. Twohig brought it well under a bowl past the pub and closed with an equally good one. But Cooney held his nerve with a perfect last bowl.
In the Ulster intermediate, Paul O’Reilly beat Cathal Toal and Thomas Mackle at Knappagh. They were level after three shots each to Condy Corner. Toal led at the minister’s, with O’Reilly almost a bowl down in third. O’Reilly levelled to Farley’s with Mackle third. After two big shots to the planting corner he had a big lead. Toal got a massive last to Knappagh Angles, but O’Reilly beat it well.
Patrick O’Donoghue beat Billy Dalton by a bowl in the Munster Junior A championship at Sally’s Cross. O’Donoghue got two great bowls past Foley’s to raise a bowl. Dalton knocked the bowl at O’Shea’s and was near level at the green door but O’Donoghue finished strongly to win by a bowl.
Denis Wilmot beat Kieran Murphy in the last shot of a tremendous Jerry Desmond Cup score at Grange. They made Hodnett’s farm in four each and the cross in seven. Wilmot was just fore after another three to de Barra’s. Murphy got the better of the shots to Moynihan’s wall, but Wilmot led again at the stud farm bend. Murphy got a big last but Wilmot beat it by 30m.
Michael Desmond had a great week. He qualified for the Munster U16 final with a good win over Shane Shannon at Togher Cross on Monday, having already beaten European Champion Cian Shorten in the U18 championship at the Clubhouse. Patrick Cremin secured his place in the U18 final at Baile Mhuirne on Monday when he beat Finbarr Coomey.
Colm Rafferty did even better in Ulster when he pulled off a sensational championship double at Tassagh. He beat Ryan Kinchin in the U16 final and Mick O’Neill in the U18. Ruari O’Reilly beat Martin Cullen by almost a bowl in the Junior B final at Madden. Lisa Kiernan beat Orla Vallelly by two bowls in the Girls U16 final and Erin Connolly beat Laura Gribben in the last shot of the intermediate final.
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