For the Latest on the Provincial Matchplay Finals being played at Erry, Trim and Larkspur Park, click on the links below.
Reigning Munster Matchplay champion Declan Freeman fell in the opening match of his title defence. Shane Hoare (Larkspur Park) was a worthy 1 hole winner against Declan. And it took all of 2016 runner-up and current National Matchplay kingpin Bryan Delaney’s powers to beat Shane in the quarter-finals. The Bishopstown man eventually prevailed on the 38th to advance to a Sunday morning match against two-time Munster Mixed Foursomes winner Michael Fennell (Lakeside). Last year’s runner-up Shane Murphy (Rocklodge) has been very impressive in progressing to the last four. Comfortable victories over John Cahill and Martin Keohane see the former Raffeen Creek man pitted against the mighty Liam O’Donovan in tomorrow’s second semi-final. O’Donovan won this championship in 1997.
Sean Minogue was Munster Senior matchplay champion in 1991. 28 years on, the wily Riverdale left hander reached the 2019 Inter semi-finals by edging out Collins Club Chairman Damien Long. Minogue’s next opponent will be John Farrell (Bruff) who beat another Collins player Martin O’Connor. Cork Inter-County representative J.J. Quirke (Fermoy) will play Brian O’Flynn (Tipperary Hills) in the other semi-final. O’Flynn survived a titanic quarter-final struggle with Deerpark’s Adam Kelly.
There’s a strong Co. Tipperary presence in the last four of the Munster Gent’s Junior Matchplay. Larkspur Park’s Sean O’Neill (the reigning champion) will carry home hopes in his encounter with Richard Swords (Tipperary Hills), who claimed an impressive win over young Corkman Aaron Roche (St. Stephen’s). Noel Moynihan (Deerpark) will attempt to break the Premier County stranglehold when he challenges Daniel Ryan (Tipperary Hills).
Two Tipperary/Cork clashes will form the Ladies Senior semi-finals. Paula Nolan (Rocklodge) will face twice runner-up Martha O’Brien (Lakeside). The house of McCarthy will contest the second semi-final with Hillview’s Gemma meeting Vera, the 2005 champion from Collins.
Sarah O'Neill (Collins) racked-up two imposing early round victories to claim a semi-final slot in the Munster Intermediate Ladies event. Sarah will now line-up alongside fellow Cork player Ailish Sexton (Fermoy) - the 2018 runner-up who beat 2015 Strokeplay runner-up Margaret Forde (Riverdale). Patsy O'Donovan of Collins, beaten in the 2017 decider, will tackle last year's Strokeplay runner-up Mary Quinn (Lakeside) in the second semi-final.
2016 Strokeplay champion Margaret O’Donovan (Bruff) will play Veronica Anglim (Hillview) for a place in the Munster Ladies Junior Matchplay final. Josie McCormack (Lakeside) had a comfortable win over Hillview’s Frances Mackey to qualify for a semi-final meeting with Nuala McNamara (Collins), who received a bye into the last four.
John Ross Crangle (Loughlinstown) looks on course for a fifth Leinster Matchplay title at Trim tomorrow. At Erry today, JR beat Lucan’s Damien Creevey before eliminating defending champion Aongus Coughlan (Erry) in the last eight. JR’s opponent tomorrow morning will be Padraic Sarsfield (McBride) who won a top-class match against Erry’s Leonard O’Meara on the final green. Twice All Ireland Matchplay champion Mark Millar (Killineer) will seek to regain the Leinster title he last won in 2000. Millar’s wins over William Buckley Junior and 2017 provincial strokeplay winner Martin O’Neill set up a semi-final joust with McDonagh’s Joe Ronan who surprised Castletown’s Eamon Gibney, who has been in a rich vein of early season form.
Liz Quinn (Collinstown) received a bye into the Leinster Ladies Senior semi-finals, where she will do battle with Ierne’s Helen Greagsbey (the 2017 Inter runner-up) who defeated Poulaphouca’s Mairead O’Toole (the reigning All Ireland Over 55s champion) in the last eight. Friends and rivals Chrissie Byrne (Ryston) and Tara Dillon (Ryston) will face off yet again in the other semi-final having delivered straightforward quarter-final successes.
Kieran Egan survived a Ferbane derby with clubmate Brian Doyle to qualify for the Leinster Intermediate Matchplay quarter-finals where he will encounter Dunshaughlin’s Paul O’Rourke, who defeated former Leinster Strokeplay runner-up Kevin Doyle (St. Patrick’s) in the early rounds. The duo from Lough Owel, David Penrose (who is defending his title) and Declan Hogan will attract the bulk of the Co. Westmeath gallery to their semi-final battle.
Robert Masterson (Collinstown) capitalised on his sudden death first round victory over home player Evan Ganley to progress to the semi-finals of the Leinster Gents Matchplay at Trim. Robert will be opposed by Castletown's Gerry Plunkett, who eliminated two Co. Meath adversaries en route to the last four. The second semi-final will bring together Robert Masterson's club colleague Clive Byrne and Navan's Jonathan McCabe. Clive Byrne produced two convincing Saturday victories while Jonathan McCabe ended the hopes of Robert Middleton, who helped Gowran to the 2018 National Inter-Club title.
The home supporters will be out in force to follow Margaret Conneely (Trim) in her Leinster Intermediate Matchplay semi-final against Catherine Smith (St. Bridget’s). Catherine Smith just outlasted Suzanne Reilly (Oldcastle) in a thrilling clash that went all the way to the home green while Margaret defeated Susan Ritchie (R.G.S.C.). Joanne Cooney was a 1 up winner in her all Seapoint affair with Anne Fagan to qualify to take on Castletown’s Noreen Myles, who saw off 2017 Junior champion Frances Farrell (Killineer).
2018 National Nett Cup semi-finalist Dina Dillon (St. Bridget’s) will face Seapoint’s Barbara Murphy in Sunday’s first Leinster Junior Ladies semi-final while reigning champion Audrey Donnelly (McBride) will be challenged by Navan’s Sandra Connor who benefited from a Saturday walkover.
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