Sport

Double All Ireland champion is targeting European adventure

September 8th, 2015 11:02 AM

By Southern Star Team

Family occasion: Celtic Ross West Cork Youth Sports Star quarterly award winner Maria Nagle, centre, pictured with, from left, her brother Peter, parents Mary and John and her sister Fiona. Her brother James is missing from the photo.

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BY KIERAN McCARTHY

SHE’S a two-time All-Ireland champion and she’s still only 16 years old.

Rosscarbery’s Maria Nagle is fast making a name for herself in road bowling circles and after becoming the first bowler to retain the All-Ireland U16 girls’ title since the grade’s inception in 2003, her feats were rightly recognised when she was awarded the second quarterly Celtic Ross West Cork Youth Sports Star award recently.

Just last month, in Armagh, the Mount St Michael fifth year student won her second succ

essive All-Ireland U16 girls’ title after a dominant display against Ulster champion Leah Grimley, being three bowls up at one stage.

That made it back-to-back All-Irelands, but the latest win was much sweeter, as Maria explains.

‘Last year the girl from Armagh that I was meant to play against in the final injured herself so I just walked away with the All-Ireland, but it was much better this year because I had to fight for it. It was more rewarding to win it that way,’ she said.

With the All-Ireland secured, Maria thought that was the end of that particular adventure. Then came the phone call that she had been selected as a West Cork Youth Sports Star quarterly award winner.

‘It was really unexpected. I thought winning the All-Ireland would be the end of it so it was a big surprise to find out I won this award. It’s fantastic, a great honour,’ she said.

Joined by her parents John and Mary, sister Fiona and brother Peter at the award presentation at the Celtic Ross Hotel – her other brother James was absent on the night – it was a memorable occasion for the Nagle family from Millcove, Rosscarbery whose love for bowling is contagious.

‘For me it started with my dad when I was young and my neighbour up the road, Emma Fitzpatrick, who is mad into bowling as well – she won All-Irelands a couple of years back,’ Maria explained.

‘I remember going off out on Sunday mornings with my dad either to watch or take part, and I have been entering competitions since I was young and I’ve been working my way up since.’

Her father John competes in the veteran grade now and is a former Carbery champion, while her brother James is a former All-Ireland novice 1 champion, and that’s the tip of this family’s bowling iceberg.

Maria herself has a bright future, and her strength and speed means she carries a lot of power and she covers the road quickly.

Now she is targeting a place on the Irish bowling team for the European Championships in Holland in early May 2016 when Ireland will take on Dutch, German and Italian bowlers. The first series of trials were held last Sunday and it was an early 7am start for Maria, and her neighbour Emma Fitzpatrick (a multiple All-Ireland winner).

‘It would be great to get through there and take part in the Europeans. Trying to get there is my main ambition at the moment,’ said Maria.

BY KIERAN McCARTHY

SHE’S a two-time All-Ireland champion and she’s still only 16 years old.

Rosscarbery’s Maria Nagle is fast making a name for herself in road bowling circles and after becoming the first bowler to retain the All-Ireland U16 girls’ title since the grade’s inception in 2003, her feats were rightly recognised when she was awarded the second quarterly Celtic Ross West Cork Youth Sports Star award recently.

Just last month, in Armagh, the Mount St Michael fifth year student won her second succ

essive All-Ireland U16 girls’ title after a dominant display against Ulster champion Leah Grimley, being three bowls up at one stage.

That made it back-to-back All-Irelands, but the latest win was much sweeter, as Maria explains.

‘Last year the girl from Armagh that I was meant to play against in the final injured herself so I just walked away with the All-Ireland, but it was much better this year because I had to fight for it. It was more rewarding to win it that way,’ she said.

With the All-Ireland secured, Maria thought that was the end of that particular adventure. Then came the phone call that she had been selected as a West Cork Youth Sports Star quarterly award winner.

‘It was really unexpected. I thought winning the All-Ireland would be the end of it so it was a big surprise to find out I won this award. It’s fantastic, a great honour,’ she said.

Joined by her parents John and Mary, sister Fiona and brother Peter at the award presentation at the Celtic Ross Hotel – her other brother James was absent on the night – it was a memorable occasion for the Nagle family from Millcove, Rosscarbery whose love for bowling is contagious.

‘For me it started with my dad when I was young and my neighbour up the road, Emma Fitzpatrick, who is mad into bowling as well – she won All-Irelands a couple of years back,’ Maria explained.

‘I remember going off out on Sunday mornings with my dad either to watch or take part, and I have been entering competitions since I was young and I’ve been working my way up since.’

Her father John competes in the veteran grade now and is a former Carbery champion, while her brother James is a former All-Ireland novice 1 champion, and that’s the tip of this family’s bowling iceberg.

Maria herself has a bright future, and her strength and speed means she carries a lot of power and she covers the road quickly.

Now she is targeting a place on the Irish bowling team for the European Championships in Holland in early May 2016 when Ireland will take on Dutch, German and Italian bowlers. The first series of trials were held last Sunday and it was an early 7am start for Maria, and her neighbour Emma Fitzpatrick (a multiple All-Ireland winner).

‘It would be great to get through there and take part in the Europeans. Trying to get there is my main ambition at the moment,’ said Maria.

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