Vincent Kiely rallies after injury to edge out Michael Murphy

Vincent Kiely launched the Hancy Hubbard Cup at Béal na Marbh with a sensational win over Michael Murphy.

Murphy opened with two great bowls to sight, while Kiely just missed in two. Kiely fought back immediately and levelled with a brilliant fifth to the top of the hill. Murphy then played the three longest shots on record at Béal an Marbh. He was facing the rock after the first. Kiely did well to keep the lead 30m under a bowl in reply to that. Murphy’s next went past the rock and on past Hubbard’s. He then went past the next bend to the railing at the lawn. Kiely bowled impressively to be just a bowl and five metres down at that point.

Kiely rallied with two super shots to sight at the next bend. Murphy misplayed his bowl to the right and he took two more to make sight. Kiely won the lead with his shot to the next bend. Murphy edged the shots to the novice line and they were still locked together after another shot to sight at the cottage.

Despite picking up an injury Kiely held a 10m lead after his second last. Murphy played what looked a good last shot, but it unluckily veered right and missed the line by 10m. Kiely was spot on with his reply and beat the line by 50m.

Denis Wilmot stormed home with six sensational bowls at Bauravilla to secure a quarter-final spot in the JJ Murphy Cup at the expense of James Nagle.

Wilmot won the opening exchange with a good bowl to the top of the bridge. Nagle made Robin’s cross with a super second to cut the lead to 20m. He won the lead with his third , but Wilmot had edged in front again after two more to the netting. Nagle regained the lead with a big shot past Dekker’s. He followed with two more big throws to the rock. Wilmot missed the rock to fall almost a bowl behind.

Wilmot moved up several gears from there. He scorched to the new house in three to go a shot clear. He extended his lead with his next two. Nagle then played a brilliant bowl tight on the right, which looked certain to cut the lead. Wilmot’s reply was another massive bowl to just short of the line. Nagle could do nothing with his last to make any impact.

Darren Oliver led all the way to beat David Hubbard by almost a bowl in the Seán Scannell Cup at Donoughmore.

He won the first exchange by 40m. Hubbard then played a brilliant second past the gates, but Oliver replied with another good one to hold a 10m lead. He increased the intensity with three more good shots to the Bounds to stretch his lead to almost a bowl.

It was still just under a bowl at Ring’s corner. Oliver then reached Ring’s, but Hubbard beat it by 60m to bring the lead well under a bowl. After Oliver’s next shot he had just 70m odds. Hubbard then played a good bowl towards the wall, but it unluckily hit the back of the wall. This lifted the siege and Oliver was almost a bowl clear again after another three onto the straight.

It was still just under a bowl after the shots towards the nooks. Oliver increased his lead with his next past the bend and he won by almost a bowl. Hubbard reversed the result back. Oliver led the first three, but Hubbard bowled brilliantly to go two bowls clear at Rings’. Oliver finished well to bring the lead well under a bowl.

Muiris Buttimer beat Ger O’Driscoll in the last shot at Lyre. O’Driscoll edged the first five, with Buttimer leading with his sixth to the tunnel.

He then played three good bowls to Crowley’s bend where he led by a bowl. O’Driscoll cut the odds to just 40m with a sensational shot towards McCarthy’s bend.

Buttimer held his odds when his next bowl got a good break.

He increased that to 50m after rubbing to the end of the railing. O’Driscoll followed with two more good shots to regain the lead facing the line. Buttimer closed with a brilliant bowl up the rise. O’Driscoll’s bowl drifted right and missed it.

Ciarán Nyhan beat Sidney Shannon by two bowls at Drinagh while, at the Pike, David O’Mahony beat Johnny O’Driscoll with a big last shot.


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