Leona Doolin delivers in style

USHA Junior Nationals at Tucson, Arizona: Strongly tipped to win a USHA Junior National title in the USA Leona Doolin of St. Coman’s Club, in Roscommon Town, duly delivered in style. With Aisling Reilly of Belfast, also a member of the Irish team, she won the 19 and Under doubles title beating the Canadian duo of Kira Toxopeus and Pepukas Jones in two straight games. Because of a small turn out from the American girls the 13 and Under and 15 and Under were combined and so was the 17 and 19 grades. This meant that Leona didn’t have the opportunity to compete in the 17 and Under grade in which she was to represent Ireland. She moved up to the 19 and under in which she conceded over two years. In the 19 and under singles she lost the final to team-mate Aisling Reilly 21-4, 21-12. However, a 19 and under doubles title and an under 19 singles runner-up place was marvellous result for Leona. One of the disappointments of the USHA juniors was the weakness of the American girls. They were not able to match a very formidable Irish contingent particularly in the girls’ grades. Leona’s victory was tremendous insomuch as it follows Marianna Rushe’s success last year in Kansas and wins by Lydia Doolin in the 90s in Chicago and Phoenix and also the Under 17 win by Coman’s Nicola Kelly in Phoenix in 2001.  2007 was a great year for 17 year old Leona, winner of Minor doubles titles with Marianna Rushe in both codes; winner of Irish National One Wall U-18 singles in Sligo; on the Irish team in the Basque country; won a senior doubles title for the Convent of Mercy, Roscommon in the Colleges Championship and played a pivotal role in Connacht’s win over Leinster and Munster in the Inter-provincial team of ten championship.  Also a USHA winner was Amy Corrigan of Ballaghaderreen who won the 15 and Under singles title giving a marvellous display in the final. County Handball Convention: The County Convention will take place on 21 st January and all clubs are asked to have their delegates in place. Motions and nominations should be with the County Secretary on time. More details from John Kennedy the County Secretary. County Junior 40 X 20 singles at Lisacul: Denis Creaton (Lisacul) had to pull out all the stops to beat Pat Nolan of Cloncan 21-17, 21-13. Junior ‘B’ Doubles: O. Naughton/N. Neilan Vs. P. Kelly/P. Coyle on Thursday 10 th January at 8 p.m. at Coman’s; N. Gordon/T. McGrath Vs. J. Kennedy/S. Joyce on Friday 11 th January at 8 p.m. at St. Coman’s; O. Naughton/N. Neilan Vs. P. Kelly/P. Coyle or G. Raftery/D. Hynes on Sunday 13 th January at 3 p.m. at Coman’s – this game may be postponed because one of the players will be away.  Junior Singles: Denis Creighton (Lisacul) Vs. L. Maughan or N. McDermott at 4p.m. on 13 th January at Coman’s. Niall McGrath Vs. Christopher Doolin on Sunday 13 th January at 5p.m. at Coman’s; Results – Junior Singles: C. Doolin defeated P. Maughan 21-4, 21-16. Junior ‘B’ Singles: O. Naughton defeated B. McDonagh 21-13, 21-11.  St. Brigids, Curraghboy 40 X 20 doubles Tournament: The winners of the Curraghboy tournament Cormac O’Brien and Gerard Walshe, two World champions, regained the Pake Doyle Perpetual Cup at the end of a long day of competitions that started at 10 a.m. an didn’t end until 9.30 p.m. some of the games were also played at St. Coman’s. Attending the tournament was President Elect Tony Hannon, Niamh Egan Irish Handball Council Croke Park and Mr. Frank Kenny, St. Brigids GAA and former Handball All Ireland winner. Twelve teams took part and the tournament under Seams McHugh. Cup Results: Martin Bruen/Denis Creighton (Lisacul) defeated Alan Tierney/Declan Connaughton (Galway) 31-23. Cormac O’Brien/Ger Walshe (Brigids) defeated Paul Fitzpatrick/Padraig Gaffney (Cavan/Dublin) 31-20. The latter had earlier beaten N. Neilan/O. Naughton 31-26. Padraig Coyle/Phillip O’Connor (Curraghboy) defeated Niall McDermott/Shane Hennelly (Coman’s) 25-15 in the Plate Competition. Final of the Cup: C. O’Brien/G. Walshe (St. Brigids, Curraghboy) defeated Denis Creaton/M. Bruen (Lisacul) 31-19. Plate Competition Final: Oisin Naughton/Nigel Neilan (Coman’s) defeated P. O’Connor/P. Coyle (Curraghboy) 31-30. The Pake Doyle Cup was presented to the winners by Mr. Frank Kenny and the Plate Trophies to O. Naughton and N. Neilan. The Curraghboy Club also made a special presentation to the President Elect Mr. Tony Hannon. Congratulations to all who made the Tournament an outstanding success.