SEAMUS O'TUAMA: Kingston rules in Phair Cup final

Killian Kingston bowled impressively at Shannonvale on Saturday to win the Noel Phair Cup final comfortable at the expense of Raymond Ryan and Wayne Callanan.

Ryan opened with a good bowl to take the first tip by 15m from both his opponents. Callanan got a brilliant second shot the bungalow, which gave him 70m on Kingston. Ryan missed Callanan’s tip in two attempts to fall a full bowl behind, but he knocked the bowl with his good fourth throw. Ryan levelled with Callanan in the shots to the quarry, where Kingston now led by almost a bowl after six.

Kingston missed Desmond’s Cross with his seventh shot from the pillars. So at the cross he lofted his odds on Callanan and was still a bowl clear of Ryan. He intensified his grip on the score with two great bowls to Sam’s lane, where he had two bowls on both Callanan and Ryan. He snuffed out any hope of a late challenge by making Tobin’s in 13. Ryan pushed clear of Callanan to secure second place.

James O’Donovan beat Gary Daly and Christy Mullins in the final of the Joe O’Sullivan Acorn Life Cup at Castletownbere on Sunday.

He opened with a brilliant bowl that gave him 30m odds on Mullins and 80m on Daly. Mullins took the lead with a great second bowl, beating a good bowl from Daly, with O’Donovan between tips. Daly then led after an incredible third shot. Mullins was now second and O’Donovan looked to be in trouble after two poor shots left him a bowl behind Daly.

Mullins’ next bowl lodged under a parked car, which caused him to miss the corner with his next shot. O’Donovan’s bowl rubbed at the same point and clipped Daly’s odds back to a bare bowl. In the shots past Roadeen Cross O’Donovan closed the gap on Daly and he regained the lead with a good bowl to the lag. Mullins tightened the odds on the leaders with a great bowl to the doctor’s, where Daly edged O’Donovan by a metre.

Mullins still needed a big bowl to have a chance of winning, but he missed the line by 120m. O’Donovan missed the line by just 10m with his bowl and Daly played his to the left and missed it by 80m. Mullins got a big last shot, which Daly beat by just 20m, but neither tip was enough to trouble O’Donovan.

Mullins will have a chance to reverse the result when he plays O’Donovan over the same road in the annual RNLI benefit on December 28.

Thomas Boyle beat the line at Curraheen in 14 shots in his bowl of odds win over Denis Wilmot.

He won the opening tips by 15m and followed with a brilliant shot to the third corner. Wilmot kept in touch by making the bridge in five to hold the lead under a bowl. Boyle could do little with his fifth shot from poor sight so his lead was back to 80m. Wilmot followed with three great bowls to the riding school to take the lead.

Boyle then played a brilliant bowl to the tarmac which pushed him 80m clear again. Wilmot took two throws to beat Richard’s lane, which Boyle beat in one to raise a bowl of odds. He held that lead by beating the line in two more good throws.

Johnny Collins beat Joe McCarthy by a bowl in the Togher Cross final. He opened with three good bowls to raise a bowl of odds. McCarthy fought back towards the creamery and had the lead down to 50m coming to the narrow road. He missed an easy tip with his next to fall a bowl behind again. He rallied again, but Collins ended the contest with a brilliant second last shot.

Éamon Bowen Jnr beat Brian Wilmot by a bowl at Enniskeane. Wimot’s first bowl hit a pillar. Bowen kept him on the back foot by making the Mill in four which put him a bowl in front. Wilmot then played three super shots to the watery lane to level the score.

Bowen hit back with two brilliant bowls to the bridge to restore the bowl of odds. They both made the gap in four more. Bowen then got a great bowl past Kingston’s which effectively secured his bowl of odds win. He led Wilmot by a bowl at the Mill in the return score. Wilmot rallied with two brilliant shots to just short of the starting line and took it in the last shot.

Jerry Murphy beat Terry Sexton by one metre at Béal na mBláth. He raised a bowl with two good opening shots. Sexton had the lead under a bowl after two more, but Murphy was a bowl clear again at Long’s lane. Sexton closed the gap past Twohig’s farm and was level at the big corner. He finished with what looked an unbeatable bowl, but Murphy played a perfect reply and just beat it.

Tom Browne had two wins from three starts at Kilcorney. He beat Deckie O’Mahony by a bowl in a tournament score. He followed with a last shot win over Johnny Byrnes, but Byrnes reversed the result in the last shot in the final score.


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