Four All-Ireland titles For Galway handballers

 Ladies' junior doubles handball champions, Galway's Eimear Ni Bhiadha and Ashling Ní Mhaoláin.

Ladies' junior doubles handball champions, Galway's Eimear Ni Bhiadha and Ashling Ní Mhaoláin.

Galway claimed four All-Ireland titles on a successful weekend of handball, but there was disappointment for Moycullen's Martin and Diarmuid Mulkerrins.

The Mulkerrins brothers were aiming to win Galway’s first All-Ireland senior men’s doubles title since 1985, but they suffered defeat against Diarmuid Nash and Colin Crehan. The Clare duo won the title in 2018 and were runners up in 2017, while the Moycullen pairing reached the quarter finals in the previous two years but had never progressed further.

Previous doubles winners Nash and Crehan used all their experience to take the first game, despite the Galway brothers pushed 8-3 clear in the opening game.

And although the Clare team levelled, the Mulkerrins again took a seven-point lead. Then the defending champions raised their game - their serving pushing the Mulkerrins back in the court, and although the first-time finalists reduced the deficit to 18-17, Crehan hit two kill shots before a Martin Mulkerrins miss gave Clare the opening game.

The Mulkerrins started quickly in the second game, and with Diarmuid Mulkerrins’ serve giving their opponents trouble, they went 9-3 up. However once again Nash hit two kill shots before levelling the game at 9-9. The sides exchanged aces before Nash and Crehan went 15-10 ahead with their roof shots causing problems for the Moycullen men.

They shared the next four aces as Crehan hit a streak of form, finishing winners by 21-17 21-12.

U21 doubles

However Diarmuid Mulkerrins did enjoy All-Ireland success, winning the U21 doubles title with Micheál Breathnachs' clubman Cian O’Conghaile the following day. The Galway pairing beat Kilkenny’s Eoin Brennan and Connor Murphy 21-9 21-4.

Silver Masters

Graham Casburn and Morgan Duggan had been the first pairing to represent Galway during the All-Ireland weekend. Opponents, Tipperary’s Joseph Ryan and Finbar Ryan, won the opening game 21-18 before losing the second game, and although the Moycullen/Annaghdown partnership fell 6-12 behind, they reeled off 15 points in a row to claim a deserved All-Ireland title.

Ladies Junior champions

Eimear Ní Bhiadha and Ashling Ní Mhaoláin claimed the ladies' junior title - their second All-Ireland doubles title in two years. after Morgan Darcy and John Keleghan earned the Over 70s title, while Pierce Lalor lost the Emerald Masters B All-Ireland final 21-10 21-3. In the Ruby Masters final, Bert Keleghan and Michael O’Malley suffered defeat to the Carlow duo of John Rossiter and Sean Ryan.


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