A look ahead to next weeks AGM, reports from the bowling trials at Castletownkenneigh, reaction from the vintage grade along with all the rest of the weekends action
Ból Chumann’s AGM 2020/21 is on at The Munster Arms Hotel, Bandon, on Tuesday November 30 at 8.00pm. On the night, chairman, Michael Brennan, will launch a three-year strategy programme which he and a select committee have been preparing under the guidance of Maeve Buckley, Leading Sport. The programme headlines a number of objectives the Association has on its agenda for the coming years. Structure, development and promotion are seen as key areas to work on and the strategy programme outlines how Bol Chumann nahEireann can work in collaboration with Local Sports Partnerships. A number of motions have been submitted from the regions and these will be debated. The Association’s financial report will be read out and the election of officers to serve for 2022 will take place. Registration for those attending will take place at 7.30pm.
Almost spring-like conditions have prevailed at Castletownkenneigh for the first two rounds of International Road trials. Upwards of forty bowlers are aiming for places in Bol Chumann’s international teams to participate at the The European Championships at Garding, just six months away. Setting early markers on the first morning on the road were senior men, Gary Daly, David Murphy, Brian Wilmot, Michael Bohane; Boys U18, Darragh Dempsey and Jamie Kelleher; senior women, Hannah Sexton and Hannah Cronin; U18 girls, Rachel Kingston and Margaret Sexton. There were big performances again on Sunday last from James O’Donovan, senior men, Hannah Cronin, Senior women, Darragh Dempsey U18 boys and Rachel Kingston U18 girls.
Togher Cross girl, Hannah, was in fine form too on Saturday last when, at Drinagh, she scored a win from Julieanne Hayes in a well-contested womens winter league score. Local girl, Julianne, could do little with a terrific opening salvo from Hannah whose four from ‘Young’s cross’ to near sight at the ‘church’ were of the highest order. Three more to just back of ‘Shandrum cross’ put the seal on this victory. In the same competition on the previous weekend, Newcestown hosted the meeting of Juliette Murphy and Lisa Hegarty and an interesting set-to it proved to be. The former Cork football great did not make the best of starts here and her Lyre opponent was ahead in the early stages. Lisa, did not, however, take full advantage and the contest evened out at ‘O’Brien’s cross’. From there, Murphy found her form lining four of the best to put winning law between them. Juliette won by a bowl for €300.
The vintage grade is making steady progress. The A section final is moved back a day to this Saturday at Ballygurteen when the three-way play-off between Chris O’Donovan v Jimmy Collins v John Nagle goes ahead. Throw-off time is 2.00pm. In B Michéal O’Ceallacháin and John Murphy emerge from section 1 to contest the over-all B semi-final after wins at the weekend. New Association Honorary Secretary, O’Ceallacháin, got the better of Denis Hickey at Ballinagree while Mid Cork’s John Murphy defeated Dan O’Regan at Dunderrow. Four scores in the western section B have narrowed down the numbers. In an all Carbery clash at Caheragh on Saturday, Harry Russell defeated D D Carroll in the last shot of a score in which both men held the front at different points. They played for a total of €1,740. Harry plays Bob O’Regan at Ballinacarriga on Saturday next.
There was an upset of sorts at Timoleague where Donal O’Sullivan eliminated former two-time outright winner, Mick Murphy, Innishannon, by a two-bowl margin. Murphy led this one at ‘the monument’ but from there O’Sullivan lined three outstanding efforts to take a commanding lead that he held to the finish. Next up for O’Sullivan is a meeting with Donal Harnedy. Carbery man, Harnedy bowled well in a last shot victory over Patsy O’Sullivan at Drinagh on Sunday morning. The stake here amounted to €1,000. The irrepressible Pat Joe Connolly notched up another win. Strong contender, Liam O’Driscoll, (Skibb), was the latest to go under to the Ferlihanes man. Going at The Pike on Saturday, for an €800 stake, Connolly led by a bowl at ‘White’s cross’ and withstood good pressure from O’Driscoll to forge a last shot win. Connolly meets the winner of Bob O’Regan/Harry Russell in the next round.
Scores in section C went on as well. South-West men, Jerry Connolly and
Timmie Hennessy met at Timoleague from where Connolly emerged the winner and will face P J Hegarty at Lyre in the next round. In section C (1) Thade Murphy defeated Joe Mackey at The Bog Road and will play Liam Barry at Carrignavar in the next round. In the vintage championship section C at Ballinacurra on Sunday week, Tom O’Donovan, Crossbarry, won from Martin Desmond by a bowl for €740.
In the B section at Drinagh, a battle of the Derryclough O’Driscoll cousins, Liam won from James. Also, in section B at Togher Cross, Patsy O’Sullivan, Kealkil, was in good form in his win over Connie Connolly. In vintage C (1) at Gortroe, Joe Walsh defeated Martin Kelleher and Eddie Barry defeated Denis O’Leary.
Almost all West Cork clubs were in active mode as a flurry of scores narrowed down an extensive championship programme. At Bantry in novice veteran, Connie Connolly hit a score-winning sequence in the middle third of his contest with Jimmy Nyhan. Connolly won by a bowl for €1,000. Also, in Bantry, Martin Murphy kept a good novice C run going with victory over Jason Daly. Bantry too hosted the junior C clash of James Lordan and Chris Murray. Lordan won this one by a bowl of odds.
A cracking contest at Drinagh saw Whiddy native Sean O’Leary score a last shot victory over David Cotter for a €1,200 total and in U18 here, Darragh Kehily won from Paudie Crowley. The U18 girl’s semi-finals were staged at Ardcahan and here, Rachel Kingston, going well too at the international trials, won from Emer O’Connell and Katelyn Sheehan won from Grace Hickey. Here too in U16 boys Brian Horgan won from Jack Gibbons. At Ballinacarriga, a humdinger in the novice A championship was won at the death by Diarmuid Hurley after Sean O’Riordan misplayed his third last at ‘Granure cross’. The Lisbealad man had bowled well to build up a handy lead. but Hurley edged in front with two to go. They played for a combined €1,400. Out Ballinacarriga, Kevin Murphy stayed on course in novice C with a win over David Hourihane. Kealkil was the venue for the novice B quarterfinal meeting of James Hurley and Alan Keane. Hurley won this one by a bowl for €700.
At Kealkil in U16, Sean Cronin won from Oisin Murphy-Hurley and at The Clubhouse another score in a hotly contested novice C championship saw the impressive, Alan Brickley come out on top against Schull’s Joseph O’Mahony. At Durrus, Castledonovan’s Tim Roberts showed his paces to win a cracking contest with John Tringle. This novice D quarterfinal carried an €800 total stake. At Durrus too in U16, Driangh’s Eoin Hurley staged a thrilling comeback to retrieve a two-bowl deficit and win in the last shot from a gallant Eamonn Crowley.
Vincent Kiely won a thrilling north Cork junior A final from David Hubbard at Gortroe. For a €6,000 total Hubbard beat big shots to hold a slender lead after six but then missed a chance of extending with his seventh. Kiely’s massive ninth past the ‘Well Bar’ swung it his way. Also, in north Cork in novice D, Paul Walsh, Donoughmore won his semi-final from Willie Murphy (K) at Ballinagree and will play Rory O’Connell in the decider. In Gaeltacht scores, novice D at Baile Bhuirne, Shane Keane defeated D J O’Driscoll and in E, Christoir Desmond defeated Eamonn McSweeney. In junior ladies at Cill na Martra, Helen Browne won from Maree Lynch and in novice C, Liam Kearney won from Dara Lynch.
The Mid Cork junior B semi-final at Newcestown attracted a good crowd on Sunday week last and resulted in a victory for Enniskeane contender, Brendan O’Neill. Templemartin’s Killian O’Sullivan was well in contention firing good shots to ‘Allen’s lane’ and again at ‘Lucey’s’ where he led by a small margin. A short one at ‘Fehily’s’ was his undoing and O’Neill, with an error-free sequence, built a commanding lead by ‘O’Brien’s’ cross. Either Ger O’Driscoll or Kenneth Murphy will oppose O’Neill in the junior B final. Back Newcestown on Sunday, John Madden defeated Michael Brennan, by a bowl for €2,000. James Kelleher, after a busy few weeks with Newcestown senior hurlers, was back in the bowling game but surprisingly lost out to P J McCarthy in his novice B semi-final played at Templemartin on Saturday. Kelleher, very much the favourite, did not make the best of starts but recovered to come within metres of his Kinsale rival for the last shots. His final effort did not run well, and it is McCarthy who goes through. In the Mid-Cork novice D semi-final at Dunderrow, Fionn Dwyer defeated Kevin O’Sullivan by a bowl for €1,500 and will play Michael Hickey in the decider. In Mid junior ladies, Martina Foley won from Siobhan Kelleher. Newcestown also staged Mid Cork’s novice C final on Sunday last and Dylan Galvin and Sean Nyhan served up an exciting duel for a combined €4,340. The lead changed on numerous occasions as, crucial to the outcome, Galvin beat a massive effort of Nyhan’s at ‘Canty’s lane’. Ten metres separated them with three to go and again Galvin held his nerve beating huge second last and last shots from Nyhan to score a hard-earned win.
Shannonvale had a busy weekend with five scores on Saturday and Sunday. Local man. Ger Connolly defeated Shane Shannon on Saturday, one bowl, for €7,000, but the Durrus men were on the winning side in the return when Carbery’s novice B champion, Sidney Shannon defeated Shane Nugent, one bowl, for €3,000. The big one on Sunday was the meeting of Denis Wilmot and Dec O’Donovan. Going for a combined €6,200 it was a surprisingly one-sided contest as Wilmot, thanks to a brilliant shot to ‘Desmond’s’ from ‘Buttimer’s pillars’ rose a two-bowl lead on the Carbery man. When he extended that further by ‘Kingston’s lane’, his lead was unassailable. Denis O’Sullivan kept the Carbery flag flying with a last win over Alan Butler for a €4,000 total Joe Tyner was in the winner’s enclosure too defeating Declan O’Donovan (Kinsale) last shot, for €1,000.
At Bauravilla in the John Joe Murphy Cup, John Young produced a superb fourth shot to rise a bowl on Tony O’Sullivan and had big odds with it in eight to the ‘rock’. O’Sullivan staged a stirring revival and had it under the bowl at ‘O’Donoghue’s’, but Young’s big effort from the novice line ensured a place in the semi-final draw. On Sunday week last at Ballinacurra, Upton, City and West Cork players enjoined in a couple of entertaining jousts. West Cork’s junior B Adrian Buttimer took on City’s rising star, James O’Sullivan and they ended up with honours even. Buttimer won the outward score, last shot, for €2,800 with O’Sullivan reversing the result in the return, two bowls, for €3,000. Here on last Sunday, Stephen Bowen defeated Jim Coffey (jun), last shot, for €3,000and Martin O’Donovan defeated Michael O’Leary, last shot, for €2,900.