Handball Murphy wins national u17 title

Patrick Murphy receives his gold medal.

Patrick Murphy receives his gold medal.

Claremorris Handball had a win in the 40x20 Juvenille All Irelands in Kingscourt last weekend. Patrick Murphy won his u17 final against Padraig Delaney of Laois on a 21-10, 21-16 scoreline. The first game was an even match up to the 10-point mark. At that stage, Patrick's more consistent kill shots and effective roof play began to show on the scoreboard. Patrick eventually pulled clear to finish it out 21-10. The second game was a mirror image of the first, up until Patrick led 20-11. At that stage, Delaney put the pressure on in an attempt to save what looked like a lost cause. Delaney managed to pull back a few aces and at 16-20, was asking a few questions of Patrick. However, Patrick took a timeout, composed himself and continued to finish out the game (21-16 ), winning his first singles All Ireland and the first by a Mayo player in the boys U17 grade.

Claire Reynolds of Belcarra took a silver for Mayo as she just missed out in the Girls U15 Singles. She came up against a tough opponent in the form of Mary-Ellen Phelan from Kilkenny. With Phelan having legendary Kilkenny Handballer Michael "Ducksy" Walsh in her coaching corner, it was always going to be a hard task for the Belcarra player.

Five Mayo masters handballers took to the courts of Kingscourt over the weekend in search of Gold. However, most had to settle for silver this time around. Tom McCormack (Claremorris ) just missed out against Mick Armstrong from Wexford in the GMBS Final after a two hour long battle. Tom lost the first 21-13, but recovered to take the second 21-15, before eventually losing out 21-16 in the deciding game. Tom had a great run to the final, with some very good wins, just coming out the wrong side on this occasion. Three more Mayo players finished with silver medals the were Martin Cronin (Bofield ), Columba Holleron (Swinford ) and Joe Dowling (Ballaghaderreen ).

Michael Ginley of Bofield took Mayo's only overage Gold when he won the SMBS on Friday evening. He beat Christy Donnelley from Dublin on a 21-11 21-16 scoreline. It was a great win for Michael and he finally got the reward that his efforts deserved.

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