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Westmeath Topic - 12 April 2018

62 SPORT TOPIC •

62 SPORT TOPIC • 12 April, 2018 MULLINGAR RUGBY CLUB NOTES Mullingar advance in Harry Gale Cup after thriller Mullingar Under 20s............................31 Ashbourne Under 20s.........................24 HARRY GALE UNDER 20 CUP Mullingar’s Under 20 rugby team got the ball rolling in this year’s Harry Gale Cup with a fine win over Ashbourne on Thursday night in Mullingar. After winning this trophy for three years in a row - 2014, 2015 and 2016 - this year’s group were all starting their first Gale Cup game. Mullingar got off to a good start with a try by Alex Mitic after five minutes, which was converted by Eoin Commins, to put the home side 7-0 up. Mullingar were on the defensive for the next 20 minutes or so as Ashbourne rallied and Mullingar had to make their first substitution when an injured Alex Quinn went off. In the 28th minute Ashbourne got off the mark with a try, which was converted, to level the scores at 7-7. Mullingar responded with another try by Alex Mitic five minutes later to go 12-7 up, but just on the stroke of half-time the scores were level again, after another try by Ashbourne to leave the halftime score at 12-12. Mullingar started the second half with Oisin Fitzgerald now on the bench with a recurrence of a shoulder injury. Despite the disruption, Mullingar were to score next with a try by Taylor Daly. With the conversion missed, Mullingar Handball Club Notes The ‘Topline Mullingar Hardware’ sponsored Juvenile One Wall competition, which has been taking place in Mullingar were now ahead 17-12. With Mullingar a man down, Ashbourne now had a lot more possession and just a couple of minutes after the Mullingar score, Ashbourne took the lead with a try and conversion to go 17-19 up. As ever with Under 20s games both sides were intent on running at every chance and this was a great end to end action match. Both sides were also guilty of a number of knock-ons though and giving away a good few penalties. This was probably due to rustiness on both sides, as a number of players hadn’t played in quite some time. Despite losing the lead in the 50th minute, Mullingar were tackling hard and were beginning to impose themselves despite being a man down. The sharpness of a number of Mullingar players were telling and in the 66th minute Mullingar regained the lead. A quick break from a scrum by Sean Rock and a kick into the Ashbourne 22, eventually resulted in a try by Eoin Commins, which he duly converted to put Mullingar back in front by 24-19. Three minutes later, Mullingar were to extend that lead. Ashbourne were in possession and moving the ball wide to the wing when a good tackle by Alex Mitic, resulted in the ball going loose. Taylor Daly was quickest to react, picking up the loose ball, beating a couple of Ashbourne Mullingar Handball Club over the past number of weeks, came to a successful conclusion last Saturday, April 7th. The quality of play of the round robin series was superb and as each match went by it was more difficult to predict who would be the overall winner. The quality of play by all the players was a credit to the superb coaching the players have received from competition co-ordinator Kevin Flanagan. Prior to the start of the finals, Kevin extended his thanks to all the players who took part in the tournament, to Topline Mullingar Hardware for their generous sponsorship of the competition and the local media for their coverage of the finals. "I have no doubt that these young and talented players will follow in the footsteps of Darren Carter, Sean Flanagan and Eoin Price, who have all been successful in the game of handball, and that they will continue to prosper defenders and waltzing in for the final Mullingar score in the 69th minute. Mullingar now lead by 31- 19 but with Max Brennan now off with a cramp, the home side were two players down, with ten minutes left. The collective determination and defending now needed to be focused. Ashbourne now had a lot of possession but found it hard to break through the determined Mullingar defence. With three minutes remaining on the clock, Ashbourne were to get their reward with a try, the conversion was missed though to leave the score at 31-24. The final three minutes of the game saw some more Mullingar determination in the tackle, winning a penalty in the last play, which was duly despatched to touch to finish the game as Mullingar emerged winners. Mullingar will now face the winner of the Bective/Galwegians game, which was due to be played on Sunday last. Mullingar U 20s; Ben Glennon, Alex Quinn, Johnny Moran, Oisin Fitzgerald, Chris Fox, Jonathan Raleigh, Paddy Daly, Cashal Slevin, Conor Duncan, Sean Rock, Max Brennan, Taylor Daly, Alex Mitic, Joe Moran, Danny Gilleran, Eoin Commins. (Right) Heading for the try line... action from the Mullingar girls under 8 rugby match against Seapoint last weekend in Mullingar. both nationally and at international level. Sean Flanagan was successful in the World Championships held in Ireland, while Darren Carter has won numerous Irish Collegiates and World Collegiates titles. They are all excellent at other sports like GAA and All-Ireland U9s rugby blitz a massive success Sunday, 25th of March, saw close to a thousand parents and kids descend on Shay Murt agh Park, Mullingar, for the now annual Four Provinces Blitz. With over 475 Under 9 players representing 24 clubs from 13 different counties from all four provinces taking part on the day, it was a much larger event hurling, yet they remind everyone that handball is a great sport for developing eye and hand coordination for hurling. “I would like to thank all the parents for their support and thank all those from outside the club for their ongoing support and than last year when just 350 players took part in the first Four Provinces Blitz in 2017. There were 48 teams playing on 24 pitches across all the pitches and the paddock, with each team playing three games against teams from all over the country. From start to finish the blitz proved to be a spectacular day sponsorship of the juvenile section of the club. “We are also developing a photo gallery in the club and if anyone would like to sponsor a photo for the photo gallery they can contact me on 087-9487344,” said Flanagan. of fun for all of the budding rugby players and coaches involved. There were medals handed out to all involved by our own Irish rugby star Katie Heffernan. The real beauty of the event was the pairing of club sides that would normally never get the chance to play each other to have a game of rugby. So we THE FINALS In the ‘A’ handball final, the reigning 40x20 club champion, Eoin Daly, was up against Cathal Bane. This was an excellent final, with both players giving their all with pinpoint serves and a desire to try saw the likes of Sligo RFC playing Old Crescent from Limerick, or Cashel RFC from Munster playing City of Lansdowne from Dublin. The full list of clubs that participated were as follows; from Ulster - Armagh, Cavan and Virginia. From Munster - Old Crescent, Nenagh Ormond, Newcastle West and Cashel. From Connacht - Galwegians, Portumna, Creggs, Sligo, Carrick On Shannon and Bucanneers. From Leinster - Blackrock, Belvedere, Lansdowne, Malahide, Barnhall, Tullamore, Ashbourne, Birr, Longford, Navan and Mullingar. Thankfully, the sun came out for the day and hundreds of people stayed back for a burger and drink, while the kids enjoyed the bouncy castle. The day went off without a hitch, thanks to the hard work and dedication of the army of volunteers who organised the car park, ran the pitches, managed the clubhouse and bouncing castle, worked at the cafe and cooked the burgers! It really wouldn’t have happened without them. Our visitors had a great time with fantastic feedback post blitz from all involved. Daly adds ‘One Wall’ handball title to 40x20 title Pictured before the Juvenile One Wall Handball finals were Adam McNally, Cathal Bane, Kevin Flanagan (competition co-ordinator), Stephen Bane, Jason Malone, Eoin Daly and Osin Loughlin. Cathal Bane and Eoin Daly, finalists in the Juvenile One Wall Handball ‘A’ final. and keep the ball in play at all times. At the end of an absorbing game, Daly edged out Bane to take the honours on the day. The ‘B’ final was between two up and coming handballers - Jason Malone and Oisin McLoughlin. From the off, these two players went at it hammer and tongs, with the outcome in doubt right up to the halfway stage in the second game. Jason took the first game by 15-7, but Oisin worked hard in the second game and pushed Jason all the way before Jason took the ‘B’ title by winning the second game 15-9. Well done to all who competed and congratulations to the winners. JUVENILE HANDBALL TRAINING Juvenile handball training continues every Saturday morning in the handball alley, which is beside Mullingar Shamrocks clubhouse, between 11am and 12.30pm, and all are welcome.

TOPIC • 12 April, 2018 SPORT 63 Phil Taylor Darts exhibition a sell out! BY PAUL O’DONOVAN The good news is that renowned darts player Phil Taylor is coming to Mullingar this Saturday night. The bad news is that if you haven’t got a ticket then it is too late, as the exhibition in the Mullingar Arts Centre is a sell out! Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor from Stoke-on-Trent in England, is widely North Westmeath Darts League Doyne’s once again did the double this year in the North Westmeath Darts League. On Friday night last in Bartley’s of Drumcree the two big guns in the league did battle again with The Greyhound Bar, from Delvin, looking to avenge their defeat in the cup final last week. The Greyhound Bar were 3-1 up but managed to throw it away due to not being able to hit their doubles and Doyne’s took full advantage of it running out 6-3 winners in the end. First up for Doyne’s on Friday night last was Nick Sheldrick against Ray Enright which was always going to be a tight game, but on the night Sheldrick ran out the handy winner, winning 3-1 as Enright just couldn’t find his range on the night. Next up for Doyne’s was Barry Kiernan against Andy Price and once again the stalwart from Doyne’s made no mistake with a couple of 140s and 100s in different legs and some tidy finishing wrapped it up at 3-1. This was a great start for Doyne’s who were now 2-0 up. Next up was young Paddy Hannon against Sylvia Green and Paddy made no mistakes and with good finishes wrapped up a 3-0 win. It was looking good for regarded as the greatest player of all time, having won a total of 216 professional tournaments including 85 major titles and a record 16 world titles, including eight consecutive titles from 1995 to 2002. Some of those darts fans and sports fanatics fortunate enough to have bought tickets will get the chance to meet Phil in person and to get his autograph or perhaps a selfie with the famous sportsman. Taylor, who retired after Doyne’s now as they were 3-0 up after three games. In the fourth game it was two big guns against each other with Davie Coleman taking on Steve Malone, which ended up being a cracking game which Malone won 3-2 so now the Greyhound had a lifeline. In the fifth game Doyne’s latest addition Ian McKeon played Richie McQuillan, which The Greyhound finishing runner-up in this year’s World Darts final will do a meet and greet with fans and then a question and answer session before taking part in a darts exhibition. Some of the local players that are expected to take on Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor in the exhibition this Saturday night are: Jason Mathews, Jason Masterson, Kevin McKnight, Clive Kelly and Terence Kelly, while a number of darts players from Longford, would have fancied to win, but McKeon has been solid all year for Doyne’s and he polished off a good year with a solid win against McQuillan and Doyne’s once again retained the title they won last year. Doyne’s also had Darren McCormack and Gerry Devereux waiting to pounce if needs be but they were not required on this occasion. Carlow and Monaghan will also take on Taylor in the exhibition match. “There was such a demand for tickets for this star studded event we had to get extra seats into the Arts Centre,” said event organiser and promoter Gareth Hayes. “So we are expecting a crowd close on 400 to watch this world famous darts player in action. It should be a great night’s entertainment,” said Hayes. DOYNE’S DO DOUBLE AGAIN! Doyne’s were deserving winners on the night and once again will be the team to beat next year. The North Westmeath Darts League would like to thank Bartley’s Pub in Drumcree for their fabulous set up and their hospitality and thanks to all involved in the league this year and we are looking forward to another great year next year. End of season Juvenile Badminton Tournament Mullingar Badminton Club hosted an end of season Juvenile Badminton Tournament between the members of the Mullingar, Turin and Loughegar clubs. Over 30 children competed between the ages of 11 to 16 years of age in three sections. This successful day showed the huge talent that is growing throughout the local area in badminton. Thanks to Paula Cribbin, Cathy Tansey, Rose Cotter and Tom Roche for their commitment to junior badminton. Junior Badminton has now concluded for the season but will return at the end of September again. Phil Taylor. The Doyne’s darts team that retained their North Westmeath Darts League title when they defeated the Greyhound Bar, Delvin in the final. Winners and runners up at the end of season Juvenile Badminton Tournament in Mullingar recently were: Leah Cotter and Aoife Farrelly (winners) and Sophie Lee McLaughlin and Joshua Matthews (runners-up). COISTE NA NOG IARMHI – FIXTURES Sunday, 15 April Radisson Blu Hotel Athlone Fe 14 Football League (R3) (All games at 11.30am; first named team at home unless stated) Division 1 Moate All Whites v Shandonagh, M Seery Killucan v Athlone, N Morgan St Loman’s Mullingar v The Downs, J Allard Coralstown/Kinnegad v Mullingar Shamrocks, B Pierce St Mary’s Rochfortbridge v Cill Oige, M Moran Division 2 Kilbeggan: Kilbeggan /St Joseph’s v Garrycastle, A Graham Tubberclair v Caulry, J Fallon Milltown: Millmore Gaels v Lilliput Gaels, S Maher Monday 16 April (Right) Runners up and winners at the end of season Juvenile Badminton Tournament in Mullingar recently were; Michael Flanagan and Katie Crowley (runners-up) and winners Kate Looram and Tori Trower. Minor Board Fixtures Radisson Blu Hotel Athlone Fe 16 hurling League (R4) (All games at 7pm) Division 1 Raharney v Clonkill, A Devine Castlepollard: Clann na Gael v Na Piarsaigh, M Murtagh Ringtown: St Vincent’s v Castletown Geoghegan, J Greville Division 2 Delvin v Cullion, J Cribben St Oliver Plunkett’s v Wolfe Tones, D Heffernan Athlone: Southern Gaels v Longford Slashers, P Fox Wednesday 18 April Radisson Blu Hotel Athlone Fe 18 Football Leagues (R5) (All games at 7pm) St Loman’s Mullingar v Cill Oige, J Rock Shandonagh v The Downs, B Kelly Drumraney: Maryland/Tang v Athlone, P Fox Caulry v Coralstown/Kinnegad, N Ward Division 2 Ballinagore: Lilliput Gaels v Millmore Gaels, M Gordon Garrycastle v Tubberclair, M Galvin Tyrrellspass v St Mary’s Rochfortbridge, R Smyth Mullingar Shamrocks v Multyfarnham, D Maher Division 3 Clonmellon: Delvin/St Paul’s v St Michael’s, B Nea Moate All Whites v Kilbeggan/Joseph’s, Ken Daly Milltownpass v Killucan, S Carroll Inny shamrocks (bye) Radisson Blu Hotel Athlone Fe 12 Hurling R2 (As sent out by Coiste na Nog CCC) Thursday 19 April Radisson Blu Hotel Athlone Fe 14 Hurling League (R3) (All games at 7pm) Clonkill v Raharney, K Gunning Athlone: Southern Gaels v Na Piarsaigh, P Fox Castletown Geoghegan v St Vincent’s, D Hogan Clann na Gael (bye) Division 2 Ballymore: Fr Dalton’s v St Brigid’s, A Graham Delvin v Wolfe Tones, J Greville St Oliver Plunkett’s v Longford Slashers, C Flynn Cullion (bye) NOTES FOR CLUBS Full regulations as per planning report apply. Home team responsible for referee’s expenses in all games. Winners and runners up at the end of season Juvenile Badminton Tournament in Mullingar recently were; Aine Doyle and Cian Ray (winners) and Declan Delaney and Robert Johnston (runners up).

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