Lindsay Leussink’s win in the Top 10 Qualifier at Ballincurrig on Sunday turns Friday’s opening Queen of the Roads semi-final into a battle of the ages.
Leussink has been running neck-and-neck with Silke Tulk for dominance of Dutch bowling. On Friday these two will bookend Kelly Mallon, the reigning Queen and All-Ireland champion. Leussink showed more than enough on Sunday to suggest she can put it up to the two big stars.
Claire O’Sullivan set the target to be beaten when she reached the end of the long straight in 10.
Her first, well past the first bend, remained unbeaten for the day. She pressed on confidently and stretched clear of of last year’s winner Marlene Hoffman with a big shot past Leahy’s.
She played a brilliant last bowl, but it veered left off the centre. She could have expected to rub the left with a bowl that had more than enough zip to get round the bend at O’Riordan’s. Instead it hopped onto the verge.
Leussink had a formidable challenge, given that recent repairs have left a lot of loose chips on the surface.
Leussink got a good first bowl and was very soon matching O’Sullivan tip-for-tip. She gained a decisive advantage when her fast bowl down the short straight got a nice touch on a new patch, which directed it around the bend. She was now a full shot ahead of O’Sullivan.
She made the top of the long straight in eight. She closed in two more good bowls to qualify for Queen of the Roads.
Paddy O’Donoghue got a good boost ahead of his Jim O’Driscoll Cup tie on Friday at King and Queen of the Roads.
He beat Wayne Callanan in the semi-final of the Flor Crowley Cup at Ballinacurra. He had a big lead after three through Brinny cross. Callanan only reached the church with his next and O’Donoghue went almost a bowl clear.
Callanan won his first lead with a good shot to the muddy gap.
He increased his odds to Perrot’s and looked to be heading for a bowl at the GAA. O’Donoghue played a sensational bowl to the bridge to regain the lead. He raised a bowl at the Junior C line. He held that to the finish, beating a big last shot to hold the bowl.
Michael O’Callaghan hit top form again in his win over James O’Driscoll in the Munster Vintage (over-60) championship at Newcestown.
For his first, he took unorthodox play on the left, but reached sight. He was at O’Brien’s cross in four where he was a bowl in front. He continued to set the pace from there and was just short of the line in a near record 10 shots.
In the same championship DD Carroll carried his good form to Clondrohid to beat Tom Allen in the last throw. He got the better of good opening shots. Allen set the pace to the mulch gate where he was a shot in front. He had a full bowl at Teerbeg cross. Carroll then got a great bowl to the idle house to close the gap and was level at the Bell Inn.
Allen gained almost a bowl again with a big shot to the top of the hill. He didn’t build on this and Carroll regained the lead with a big shot from Gough’s lane. Allen regained the lead and looked well placed to beat the line from Kelleher’s. He missed the line and Carroll countered with a big shot past the line, which Allen missed by 20m.
Jerry Connolly beat Teddy Murphy in their vintage tie at the Clubhouse. They were level after six to the chips. Connolly got a big shot to Dineen’s lane to raise almost a bowl. He had a full bowl at Clonakilty cross and was two in front at Murray’s. Murphy had the lead under a bowl after Connolly made a mistake at O’Riordan’s and saved the bowl.
Julianne Hayes beat Lisa Horgan by two bowls in the Munster Junior final at Clondrohid. She raised a bowl after three and had a second bowl after six. Horgan then held it to two bowls, but Hayes pushed clear again past the Bell Inn.
Johnny O’Driscoll beat Denis Murphy by a bowl at the fundraiser at the Clubhouse. He raised a bowl with his first and held most of that to the chips. Murphy played a great bowl to O’Riordan’s, but it didn’t deflect O’Driscoll.
Jimmy O’Driscoll plucked an unlikely win from David Hubbard. They were level to the top of the hill. Hubbard raised a bowl with a big shot to Murray’s. He was still almost a bowl in front at the chips. He got a poor shot from there. O’Driscoll got a massive bowl towards the line, which Hubbard missed well. Hubbard closed with a decent shot, but O’Driscoll beat it.
Denis Cronin broke the early deadlock against Andrew O’Callaghan with a big shot through Clonakilty cross. He powered on to wrap up the contest at the novice line.
David O’Mahony beat Jerry Gibbons in the last shot at Grange.
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