Quarter-final positions secured in Jordan Cup
The second round games of the Frank Jordan Cup singles skittles competition were played over two Sundays in Micko's Bar, Taghmon and Morrissey's of Cassagh.
Ray Colfer of Mary Jo's faced Aidan Sinnott of Doyle's where Aidan proved too strong, winning two straight games. Stuart Duggan of Mary Jo's faced another tough opponent in John Joe Murphy of Taylorstown. Stuart was also beaten in two straight games despite playing well.
Reigning champion Mick Carty faced last year's beaten finalist, John Mackey, in a tense encounter in which both players took a little time to settle. John found form first and finished the opening game on nine. Mick fought back, finishing the second game also on nine.
In the third and deciding game, with little between the players, Mick demonstrated great skill and composure in clearing the ring with a clinical finish of 15, claiming the match and a place in the next round.
Jimmy Cullen of Tallaught and Tom Quigley of Power's treated spectators to what was arguably the most exciting contest of the day. The first game saw both players throw consistent scores of 14 throughout.
Both players left a finish of nine and with nothing between them bar the throw, Jimmy finished the nine in two sticks. The pressure was now on Tom to match the finish in two sticks to force the game to the highest throw.
To the delight of those watching, Tom matched the finish, bringing the game to the ultimate deciding throw. Jimmy threw first and in typical form, scored 14, leaving the one in the ring. Tom followed with a score of 14 also and, displaying nerves of steel, threw his last stick for the one, hitting the target and scoring 15 to claim the game.
The second game was more clearcut with Jimmy just ahead on form. On a finish of nine, Jimmy took no chances, taking out the five, three and one. With the sticks in Jimmy's favour, Tom had no chance to reply, making the score 1-1.
The deciding game again saw both players score consistently well, both leaving a finish of nine. Having thrown first, Jimmy had first shot at the finish, taking it out in three sticks. With the pressure again on Tom in very warm, difficult conditions, he took out the five and three in two sticks, leaving his third and final stick for the one.
With a shot that looked on target and like it was going all the way, the stick unfortunately clipped the bar on the way through, voiding the throw and giving Jimmy the victory.
In Cassagh, the first match saw Timmy Barnwell of Doyle's play Esther Downes of Clonmines. Esther was first to find form and took out a finish of nine in three sticks in the opening game. Timmy had the throw but needed two sticks to take out the five, putting the finish out of reach and giving Esther the game.
In the second game, Esther was again on form as Timmy, under some pressure, left an awkward finish of six. Esther had a shot at a finish of nine and, having taken out the five and three, in a brave throw took out the one with her final stick, securing her place in the quarter-finals.
Ger Jordan of Frank Jordan's team had an easier than expected passage to the quarter-finals as his opponent conceded a walkover due to work commitments.
The next match saw the final two Junior division players battle it out in a local derby between Deirdre O'Connor and Evelyn O'Donnell of Micko's 'A' and 'B' respectively. Deirdre was first to find form, scoring well and leaving a finish of nine. With Evelyn having no finish on, Deirdre took out the five, three and one, claiming the first game.
In the second game, Deirdre again started the better of the two but left an awkward finish of 12, ultimately ending up on the one. As Deirdre struggled to hit the one, Evelyn piled on the pressure, getting to a finish of nine. Facing the prospect of a third deciding game, Deirdre finally took out the one, winning the match 2-0.
Bill Redmond of Frank Jordan's then faced Francis Stafford of St. Leonards for a place in the quarter-finals. While both played well, Bill had the edge in the first game, taking out a finish of nine in three sticks, leaving Francis to finish eleven in three to force a draw.
The shot didn't go in Francis' favour and Bill took the first game. Both players scored well in the second game and Francis went in on 15, taking out the four and two, leaving nine.
Bill went in on eleven, taking out the two with the first stick and then finishing the nine.
With the sticks in Bill's favour, Francis had no return shot, making the score 2-0 to Bill. The quarter-finals will be played on July 26 in Rathangan.