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Sat 15-Sep-2007 21:26
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Dubs Doubles glory
Dublin’s Egin Jensen and Eoin Kennedy added their third consecutive M DONNELLY All-Ireland 60x30 Doubles title at Croke Park handball headquarters today. The duo destroyed the Mayo pairing of Dessie Keegan and Kevin Geraghty in two straight games, 21-5, 21-5 and were deserved winners of their third crown.
A late change in the Mayo personnel saw Geraghty replace Joe McCann, who suffered a collapsed lung during the week, but with Kennedy and Jensen in top form, All-Ireland glory for the Dubs was never going to be denied.
Keegan hit some fantastic shots in the early stages of the game, including one stroke of magic off the backwall which will be remembered for some time. Geraghty added some fine pieces of action to the fray, but the intensity was senior handball is something that must be experienced to be believed. When the Dubs eventually took control midway through the first game, they never looked back.
While the first opened with an exciting bite, when Kennedy settled into his stride, the Mayo men had no answers as the lost out 21-5. Dublin pushed into top gear for the second game, with both Kennedy and Jensen making even the most difficult shots look simple. The men from the capital opened an early 13-0 lead before Mayo registered their first point of the second game. This pattern continued as Kennedy served for game at 21-1, but Keegan and Geraghty stuck to their task and added four further points before Dublin finished out the game at 21-5.
The fitness and agility of this year’s All-Ireland Senior Singles winner, Kennedy, was outstanding and having added this title to his impressive collection, he joins Wexford’s John Ryan (RIP) and Walter O’Connor (Meath) as only the third player to ever take the ‘Big-Alley Grand Slam’. Ryan collected Senior 60x30 Singles and Doubles titles in 1957, along with double hardball honours and yesterday afternoon, Kennedy emulated this feat having already taken singles and doubles hardball honours for 2007 and the Senior Singles Softball title two weeks ago after a win over Kilkenny handball legend, Michael ‘Ducksy’ Walsh. A win over Mayo on Saturday next would mark yet another historic milestone in Kennedy’s illustrious career. A win over Mayo marked yet another historic milestone in Kennedy’s illustrious career.
Meanwhile, in the other All-Ireland deciders at headquarters, Limerick’s CJ Fitzpatrick added doubles honours to his singles title, when he and partner, Seamus O’Carroll defeated Kilkenny’s Ciarán Neary and Keith Bourke, while Tipperary’s Paul Mullins overcame Mayo’s Ollie Cassidy in the Intermediate Singles final.
Egin Jensen and Eoin Kennedy with the M Donnelly 60 x 30 Doubles trophy
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