DAVID Murphy turned the tables on Martin Coppinger in their Mother Hegarty Cup first-round score at Lyre last Sunday.
In avenging a Castletownbere Christmas defeat to the Bantry man, the competition’s holder Murphy gained the upper hand mainly through a splendid third shot. Coppinger’s inconsistency derailed his comeback charge and, although, it went to the last shot, Murphy was a comfortable enough winner.
Going for a €10,100 total, Coppinger led early with 40 metres separating them after two to the ‘forest entrance’. Murphy’s third was expertly delivered, holding the centre track for a huge distance and it put him 30 metres in front. In the next phase of play to ‘Crowley’s farmhouse’, Coppinger’s play was erratic and Murphy took advantage, rising a bowl of odds after a fine sixth which came close to the bend.
Coppinger steadied the ship and spun an excellent tenth to sight at ‘McCarthy’s bend’, cutting Murphy’s odds to under the bowl. It got closer after the next exchange, when Coppinger’s 11th made the ‘big tree’ but, crucially, his next did not get a good run and Murphy regained big law to the tune of 80 metres. The Brinny man’s shot for the line missed its target, giving Coppinger a late glimpse but, again, he got no purchase and Murphy’s win was a formality.
At Baile Bhúirne, Vincent Kiely and Terry Mallon had a good set-to for €1,200. The exchanges were close throughout and it went to the final one, which was won by the Mallow man. On the way back, in a novice D shootout, local Tadhg Creedon won in the last throw from Michael Brennan.
It was a last-shot encounter too at Derrinasafa, where Tom O’Donovan and Muiris Buttimer engaged. Going for a €3,100 total, it was Buttimer who had the better of it from the off and held a handy lead approaching ‘darkwood turn’. Misjudgements prevailed for the long-time leader in the ensuing exchanges and O’Donovan rook advantage to close the gap.
Buttimer still led as they faced the line, but O’Donovan lined a good one and, with his only fore-bowl of the score, it won the day for the Belgooly youth. Down the road here, Deccie O’Mahony defeated Owen Murray, two bowls, for €2,000.
At Firmount on Sunday a couple of novice E scores held interest. In the first of these, Connie Fitzpatrick defeated Kevin O’Flynn, last shot, for €400 and, in the return, Shane Martin defeated Adrian O’Conner, last shot, for the same money.
At Kilcorney in a doubles joust, Anthony Cullinane and Jason Collins won from Jim and Matty Martin for €540 and, in the return, Anthony O’Shea defeated Donoughmore man Paul Walsh for €800. Also in North Cork, at Ballinagree, recent Terelton tournament winner Danny Twomey and David Crowley shared the spoils from two scores.
Macroom native Crowley won the first of these by a bowl for €1,700 before Twomey evened the score in the return, last shot, for €1,300.