Thomas Mackle in control against Aidan Murphy in Whelton Cup

All-Ireland champion Thomas Mackle bowled well to beat Aidan Murphy by almost a bowl in the Willie Whelton Cup at Grange.

They reached Holland’s wall level on four, winning two tips each. They were at the top of the school hill in two more. Murphy just made the school cross. Mackle coaxed his reply past the cross to go almost a bowl clear. He was still almost a bowl in front after two more.

He raised it in full with 10th towards Hodnett’s. Murphy knocked the bowl briefly, but Mackle raised it again to Barry’s. Murphy then beat the line to save the bowl of odds as Mackle missed it with his last.

Wins for Paul Buckley and PJ Cooney at Ballincurrig completes the line-up for the Jim O’Driscoll Cup at King of the Roads. They play All- Ireland intermediate champion Gavin Twohig on the opening day with the winner playing Colm Rafferty in the overall final.

Buckley stormed to the green in three to open up a big lead on Paddy O’Donoghue. His next hit O’Sullivan’s wall to leave the score virtually level again. They both missed the no-play line, but Buckley got a great shot to Heaphy’s to go almost a bowl in front.

He dominated to the big corner where he led by over a bowl. He misplayed his next, but it was called. He covered the short straight with his second attempt to go two clear and end the contest.

Cooney beat Nicholas Carey by a bowl. Carey’s only fore bowl was his good second to the black sign. Cooney led to the green and beat the no-play line in five to extend his odds. Carey conceded almost a bowl with his shot from Heaphy’s.

He bounced back with two super shots to sight at Leahy’s to cut the lead to 40m. They both missed the big corner. Cooney was close enough to loft and was lucky his bowl emerged from overhanging limbs. They were short of the sycamores in two more. Cooney then got a great shot to the elbow to raise a bowl.

Dean Sexton is Munster Novice I champion after a strong display against Paul Lombard at Clondrohid. He opened with a brilliant bowl which gave him almost a bowl. He held most of this lead in the next three to the layby. He had a full bowl after two more to the Black House. He held that in another two to the Bell Inn.

Lombard cut the lead with a big shot from the Bell Inn. There was exactly a bowl between them in the next two to the hollow. Lombard fell almost two behind when it took him two more to open the bend past Goff’s lane. Sexton raised the second bowl with his shot to the farm.

Stephen Sewell was equally impressive in winning the Novice II final against John Hickey at Béal na Marbh. He made sight at the first bend with two brilliant shots to go almost a bowl up. He increased his lead to almost two bowls with his next two, but he made a mistake with his next which left just a bowl in it.

He was pushing towards a second bowl after a great sixth past the rock. He closed on that target with another big shot past Hubbard’s.

His next was accidently blocked. He compensated with a massive ninth bowl to the middle of the straight which put him over two bowls clear. He followed with another massive shot, which secured his place at Fenor. Ryan Fay won the Ulster Novice I final and Colm Doran the Novice II to complete the Ulster line-up as Joe Shortt is already qualified as Junior C champion.

Fay easily beat Fintan Daly in an all-Tyrone final at Tullysaran. He stormed three bowls clear at Mary Ann’s pub. Daly rallied to bring it back to a bowl at the Orange Hall. However, Fay took control again and had it sealed before the line.

Colm Doran beat Enda Mallon by two bowls at Newtownhamilton. Mallon led by almost a bowl after two. Doran wiped that out and went almost a bowl in front at the quarry. He bowled strongly from there to win by two bowls.

In the Novice I All-Ireland semi-finals Ryan Fay and Dean Sexton face North American champion Brendan O’Donovan. The other semi-final is between Graham Sexton (Leinster), Padraig Nugent (London) and David Hughes (Connaught).

The Novice II draw follows the same format with Stephen Sewell and Colm Doran against West Virginia’s Travis Craig. The other semi-final is between Ciarán Donnelly (Connaught ), Danny O’Shea (London) and Alan Long(Leinster).

Emma Hickey beat Emma Fitzpatrick by a bowl in the Gretta Cormican Cup at the Marsh Road. Fitzpatrick got two good opening shots. Hickey turned the score with a great bowl past the junior line and two more to Bohane’s cross where she had almost a bowl. She held that despite strong counter play from Fitzpatrick.

Chloe O’Halloran is Mid-Cork Junior champion after defeating Mary Ann O’Donovan at Ballinacurra.

At Rosscarbery Vincent Kiely beat Donncha O’Brien by two bowls.


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