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McCrystall secures Men’s A title at Irish 40×20 Nationals

Monday 17.11.2014
Team Talk Mag

Breacach’s Gabhain McCrystall served up a terrific weekend of handball as he moved on from a successful run in the Junior Nationals to claim his first title at the Adult 40×20 Nationals. The gifted teenager has been one of the most successful players in the county at underage level in recent years and his USA National 19&Under singles and doubles triumphs in December 2013, following on from his Irish Nationals 19&Under title earlier in the same campaign, highlighted a very bright future career for the player in the sport.

In a very competitive ‘Mens A’ field at the Irish 40×20 Nationals, it was actually Tyrone’s handballers who were in dominant form early on and won through a series of games to ensure three of the last four places in the event were from the O’Neill County.

Number 1 seed, Shane O’Neill set up a first semi final meeting with ciub and county colleague Gabhain McCrystall, after they defeated Clare’s Ciaran Malone and Clare’s Fergal Coughlan respectively. Pól Clarke lost to Wicklow’s Jerome Willoughby in his quarter final match but Conor McElduff was an impressive winner in his tie against Clare’s Colin Corbett and McElduff thus meeting Willoughby in the second semi final.

McCrystall really exhibited all his class in the opening semi final against O’Neill and his fantastic long range killshots ensured him a place in the 2014 Nationals final on a 21-20, 21-16 scoreline, following an outstanding contest between the duo. In the second semi final, Conor McElduff was strongly fancied against Wicklow’s Jerome Willoughby and won the opening game in an absolute cracking contest by 21-19. The tide turned in the second game though and while Willoughby won 21-13, McElduff was forced to retire through injury. The final thus saw McCrystall take on the Collboy clubman at O’Loughlin’s in Kilkenny and, following an epic opening game, was on the wrong side of a tough 21-20 scoreline. However, while McCrystall clearly possesses all the class of the very top players he responded to show terrific character and composure also and he stormed to a 21-7 win in the scond and closed out the event with an impressive 11-7 win in the tie-break.

An undoubted top class Mens A win for Gabhain McCrystall and no doubt sets him up for a most exciting season ahead in the 40×20 court. His next assignment will again see him up against many of his county colleagues with the Tyrone Premier League looking as competitive as ever and set to start in a fortnight’s time.

In the Mens Open, Tyrone’s Darragh Daly showed up well in the opening game of his first round tie against Mayo’s Joe McCann, losing 21-15 but was defeated 21-6 in the second.

Elsewhere for Tyrone, Ryan Daly made the quarter final stages of the Mens B, following a tough tie-break victory over Tipperary’s John Corbett but then lost out to eventual champion, Cork’s Michael Hedigan in the quarter finals. However, the Carrickmore man can certainly reflect on an eye-catching challenge as he lost to Hedigan by 12-21, 21-13, 11-3 before that player went on to claim the title outright.

Carrickmore Handball Club host Carmen Can Céilí

Carrickmore GAA Handball Club will host a massive dancing extravaganza this coming weekend, starting tonight Thursday 20th November in The Patrician. The event will se a total of 80 dancers take to the stage over the course of the three nights, Thursday to Saturday, with eight teams of ten representing various community groups. A top class show is in prospect and everyone in Tyrone GAA Handball wish the club all the best in this massive Show. The event will take place at 8pm each night from Thursday 20th November to Saturday 22nd November, tickets priced at £15 each.

Irish Nationals Mens A Singles:
Quarter Finals: Saturday 15th November 2014

1. Shane O’Neill (Tyrone) dft Ciaran Malone (Clare) 21-8, 21-11
2. Gabhain McCrystall (Tyrone) dft Fergal Coughlin (Clare) 21-19, 21-20
3. Jerome Willoughby (Wicklow) dft Pól Clarke (Tyrone) 21-5, 21-5
4. Conor McElduff (Tyrone) dft Colin Corbett (Clare) 21-14, 21-11

Semi Finals: Sunday 16th November 2014, O’Loughlin’s

5. Gabhain McCrystall (Tyrone) dft Shane O’Neill (Tyrone) 21-20, 21-16
6. Jerome Willoughby (Wicklow) dft Conor McElduff (Tyrone) 19-21, 21-13 ret. Inj.

Final: Sunday 16th November 2014, O’Loughlin’s

Gabhain McCrystall (Tyrone) dft Jerome Willoughby (Wicklow) 20-21, 21-7, 11-7

Results involving Tyrone players at the 2014 Irish Adult 40×20 Nationals on Saturday:

Men’s Open First Round: Joe McCann dft Darragh Daly 21-15, 21-6
Men’s Open QF 1: Robbie McCarthy dft Charlie Shanks 21-19, 21-8
Men’s Open QF 2: Martin Mulkerrins (Galway) v Killian Carroll (Cork)
Men’s Open QF 3: Brian Carroll (Meath) v Joseph McCann (Mayo)
Men’s Open QF 4: Owen McKenna (Antrim) v Diarmaid Nash (Clare)

Quarter Finals – Saturday 15th November 2014
I. Robbie McCarthy (Westmeath) dft v Charlie Shanks (Armagh) 21-19, 21-8
J. Killian Carroll (Cork) dft Martin Mulkerrins (Galway) 21-14, 21-6
K. Brian Carroll (Meath) dft Joseph McCann (Mayo) 21-18, 14-21, 11-1
L. Diarmaid Nash (Clare) dft v Owen McKenna (Antrim) 21-9, 21-4

Semi Finals – Sunday 16th November 2014
M. Killian Carroll (Cork) dft Robbie McCarthy (Westmeath) 21-20, 10-21, 11-10
N. Diarmaid Nash (Clare) dft Brian Carroll (Meath) 21-8, 21-10

Finals: Sunday 16th November 2014
Killian Carroll (Cork) dft Diarmaid Nash (Clare) 21-18, 21-15
Ladies Open

Quarter Finals – Saturday 15th November 2014
A. Amy Corrigan (Mayo) dft Ciara Mahon (Kilkenny) 15-21, 21-14, 11-10
B. Ciana Ni Churraoin (Galway) W/O Martina McMahon (Limerick) scr.

Semi Finals – Sunday 16th November 2014
C. Aisling Reilly (Antrim) dft Amy Corrigan (Mayo) 21-7, 21-7
D. Catriona Casey (Cork) dft Ciana Ni Churraoin (Galway) 21-7, 21-8

Final: Sunday 16th November 2014
E. Catriona Casey (Cork) dft Aisling Reilly 21-5, 21-10
Mens B Round 1 – Ryan Daly Tyrone dft John Corbett Tipperary 15-21, 21-8, 11-4.


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