SEAMUS O'TUAMA: Bad start takes its Martin Toal on Conor McGuigan

Martin Toal had an unexpectedly easy win over Conor McGuigan in the quarter-final of the Ulster senior championship at Port Mór-Blackwatertown.

McGuigan got a very poor opener, which Toal beat by 100m. That set the tone of the score.

Toal made the orchard corner in four while it took McGuigan five. Toal then got a brilliant bowl towards the Long Lane to go almost two clear.

Toal raised the second bowl in the shots to McCusker’s. He got two sensational bowls from McGreill’s to the Bagnell’s bridge, which gave him close to four bowls of odds.

He joins Thomas Mackle and Cathal Toal in the semi-final, either Peadar Toal or Brian O’Reilly will join them.

The Munster Junior A championship took shape with wins for Chris O’Donovan, Tony O’Sullivan and Thomas Boyle at the weekend.

O’Donovan beat Ian Callanan in the last shot at Rosscarbery.

They were level after four to the priest’s house. Callanan then got two good throws onto Barry’s hill to go almost a bowl clear. O’Donovan cut the odds to the guesthouse.

They were level after ten following a poor shot from Callanan and a great one from O’Donovan. They were dead level at the no-play line.

Callanan won the next two shots from Cahermore cross. He left the door open with a poor following throw and there was nothing between them to the finish. O’Donovan had 15m odds for the last shot. Callanan’s last was not huge, but O’Donovan beat it by just two metres.

Tony O’Sullivan beat Terry Sexton by a bowl at Castletownkenneigh. Sexton made a mistake with his third, which proved decisive.

He was a bowl down at the little bridge. O’Sullivan got a massive bowl to sight at Pyne’s corner to push the lead close to two. Sexton rallied strongly and had the lead back to a bowl for the last shot.

He got a big last throw too, but O’Sullivan beat it.

Thomas Boyle progressed at the expense of Vincent Kiely at Carraig na bhFear.

He made sight with his first to go almost a bowl in front. He raised the bowl with his second. Kiely closed the gap with a great shot past Harte’s lane. They both missed Daunt’s in another two and Boyle was still almost a bowl in front at the creamery.

He restored his bowl of odds in the next shot and increased his lead to the novice line. It was back to an even bowl at Crowley’s cross.

Kiely beat the line well with his last and Boyle missed it to forfeit his bowl of odds.

Paul Buckley is Mid-Cork champion following a bowl of odds win over Dan O’Halloran at Crookstown. He plays Jerry O’Riordan in the Munster quarter-final at Kilcorney.

He led from the off. He played a huge second throw, which raised a bowl as O’Halloran had poor second and third shots.

O’Halloran closed the gap to 20m with his next two to the wall, but lost ground again with his sixth. Buckley pulled clear and raised a bowl at the halfway point. O’Halloran finished strongly, but despite a great last shot could not bridge the gap.

Sean Donnelly beat Ethan Rafferty in the Ulster Junior A at Eglish. The lead changed hands several times in an intense contest.

Rafferty looked set to take control with a brilliant shot onto the point road, but Donnelly followed it. Rafferty drove on to raise a bowl with five to go.

Donnelly levelled with a sensational bowl through the double bends. He led with two to go, but Rafferty edged the second last. Donnelly closed with a good bowl, which Rafferty missed by 20m.

Mick O’Neill beat Sean O’Reilly by a bowl in the same championship. O’Reilly went a bowl ahead at the three-quarter point.

O’Neill fought back to win the lead and then go a bowl clear after a great shot through the double bends.

Aidan Murphy set a new record at Jagoes Mills where he beat James O’Donovan by 100m in their final Munster senior championship pool score. He was just fore after three to Lordan’s corner and he held the lead in the next two to O’Brien’s corner.

O’Donovan had his first lead at the dump, but a big rub at the sticks put Murphy back in front by 80m.

O’Donovan regained the lead with a big shot towards the railway. Murphy led again at the power station and was 70m clear at Ballinvard cross. He beat the line in two more.

Donal Riordan beat Gavin Twohig in the Jerry Desmond Cup semi-final at the Pike.

They were level after five to White’s cross. Riordan raised a bowl from there to Dreaper’s. Twohig levelled with two good shots towards the novice line.

Riordan’s bowl past the line rubbed to keep him in front and he was 60m clear after two more to the junior line. Riordan lost the lead with a poor second last.

His last was not brilliant either, but Twohig missed it by five metres.

Paul Walsh beat a big last shot from Patrick O’Donoghue to win the North East u18 final at Carraig na bhFear. Timmy McDonagh beat Kieran Kelleher in the u16 final and Aaron McDonnell beat Sean Buckley in the u14.

Noel Murphy beat Brendan O’Callaghan in the Gaeltacht Junior B final at Baile Mhuirne.


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