Ballincurry Handball Alley to open on Saturday

Ballincurry Handball Alley at Ballincurry, Glinsk, will be officially opened on Saturday by the Mayor of Galway, Sean Canny at 3 pm. The official opening represents the culmination of years of effort by the local Handball Club, spearheaded by the tireless Michael Hurley. All are welcome to attend the opening. Busy week: A moderately successful week for Roscommon handball but a very busy week with contests at Mullingar, Curraghboy, and Coman’s. An extremely busy and long day at Coman’s for the girls inter club team of four Under 16 championship that started at Curraghboy and ended with the semi final and final at St. Coman’s. The first round of the Junior Hardball singles involving Roscommon ended with a victory for Roscommon. At Coman’s the local doubles won their first round. A terrific handball win for Dessie Keegan of Ballaghderreen beating the famed Paul Brady in the tie breaker and at Coman’s Paul Flynn of Ballaghderreen beat Eugene O’Reilly of Meath comfortably and in Hardball Senior singles Vinnie Moran of Ballaghderreen beat Paddy O Donavan of Laois.  Team of four: In recent years Ballaghderreen and St. Coman’s had a good run in this tough U-16 team of Four Competition (two singles games and one double with the aggregate of points deciding the match) and on Sunday it was the turn of a well-balanced Newport (Co. Mayo) side to bring the 40×20 title again to Connacht. They had a tough passage to the final, beating in turn Clooneyquinn, Co. Clare, Ballaghderreen (the 2007 champions) and in a thrilling final overcome right at the end by the favourites Ballydesmond of County Cork. In the quarter final they beat Clooneyquinn of Clare 94-58 in a match that Lisa Loughnane of Clare was outstanding and Newport’s best players the McMenomon twins Clodagh and Ciara and indeed they had a sister Ailish on the team and remarkable Clooneyquinn had the O’Brien twins Shauna and Alanna. In the semi final Newport beat an understrenght Ballaghdereen team of Sarah Coleman, the McCormack sisters Dervalla and Niamh. The scene was thus set for an engaging final between Ballydesmond who at Curraghboy had easily beat the Coman’s team of Rochelle Mullaney, Catherine Hanlon, Shauna Lynch and Shauna Mulry. The team’s star player Lauren O’ Riordan was ill. Ballydesmond got the start, indeed a better start, than they visualised, with the under sixteen Doubles All Ireland winner and US champion Catherine Casey beating Leona Ryder 21.5, 21.1 and it looked curtains for the Mayo champions. However, their double pair of Clodagh Mc Menamon and her sister Ailish beat Aishling O’Keeffe and Siobhan Clifford 21.7, 21.15 and suddenly the title was up for grabs. Going into the final game the Mayo girls were 16 points in arrears and in stepped the player for the big occasion- Ciara Mc Menamon and she snatched the title from the Cork side winning 21.8, 21.15 to convert a 16 point deficit into a marvellous 11 point win of 90 pints to 79 points. A deserved Mayo win and in presenting the winners and runners up with their medals Handball president Tony Hannon praised the girls for a wonderfully entertaining championship and for their sporting manner on the court. Hardball Championship: Christopher Doolin has nicely navigated two rounds of the Junior Hardball championship. With Shane Hennelly of Coman’s they beat Eugene O’Reilly and Paul Carroll of Meath in straight games at Mullingar. Dessie Keegan of Ballaghderreen has done what very few have achieved and that is defeat the famed Paul Brady and he done so in style in the tie-breaker. Another Ballaghderreen man Vinnie Moran beat Laois’s Paddy O’ Donavan 21.17, 21.10 and Paul Flynn also from the Ballaghderreen Club easily beat E. O’Reilly of Meath.  Under 13: Eight teams (two from each province) will converge on Croke Park on Saturday next the 17th May for the Gael Linn Under 13 mixed doubles event. Coman’s will represent Roscommon and Michael Breathnach, Galway is the second Connacht team. For Roscommon the Coman’s pairing of Colm Walshe and Lauren O’Riordan, if they get a good draw, should do well. Community Games: The Handball Competitions at the Community Games are expected to be held at the marvellous Kingscourt complex in Cavan. Roscommon have two teams taking part (both are from the Roscommon-Kilteevan Parish). The boys’ team at Under 15 is Colm Walshe (it is going to be a busy time for Colm out at Croke Park on Saturday next and then he is off to Kingscourt the following Saturday), Gary Kelly, Conor Egan and Liam Costello. The girls Under 15 team is Rochelle Mulvanney, Lauren O’ Riordan, Shauna Lynch and Catherine Hanlon. The event will be on Saturday 24th May.  Senior Championship: The last date for entry to the Men’s and Ladies Senior 60×30 Championship is Thursday 29th May. Entry forms from the secretary to be sent to Croke Park with singles fee of €20  and doubles €40.