Ladies Summer League kicked off last week with 7 teams representing Sandycove across Classes 2 through to 7. Great team effort from all with 4 wins and many exciting matches.

This week our 1st Team is playing at home against Carrickmines 2 on Wednesday while Team 6 and 4 are playing at home on Monday and Tuesday respectively. The bar will be open each evening and supporters are very welcome.

In the meantime, a review of last week’s performance, which started last Monday with Team 4 playing at home, follows:

TEAM 4 – Thunder, lightning and torrential rain was the order of play, but the inclement weather did not deter them against Carrickmines 4. At 1st singles Lisa Morgan made light work of her opponent followed shortly by Breifne McKeever. Second doubles team captain Flanagan and partner O’Neill never let their opponents into the game, mainly due to the characteristic powerful net play by O’Neill and a win was never in doubt. Meanwhile a tight match on court 4 but the reliable pairing of Fitzsimons and Cunningham came out on top – thanks to Shelagh for subbing last minute who thankfully didn’t check the weather before committing! Despite valiant effort, twenty plus shot rallies and great net play our second singles Catherine Holmes lost out to steady opposition. Nevertheless 4 points in the bag making it a great start to the 4th’s campaign – onwards and upwards!

Tuesday evening was busier with 4 teams out and about – Clonskeagh, Wicklow, Glenageary and at home.

TEAM 1 took on David Lloyd 2s and had a great start in what is a tough group. Ellen had strong straight sets win at no.1 singles against a player on the Irish over 40’s team. Chloe had a convincing win at no.2 singles, whilst Stephanie was unlucky to loose against a player who had reached class 2 singles final in the Greystones open the week prior. Super sub Aileen partnering Joanna had a great doubles, but were unlucky to loose against an experienced pair. So at 2-2, it was all down to Ali and Sarah. After a slow start on the hard indoor surface, Sandycove managed to come back from 5-2, to win the doubles in straight sets against another seasoned pair – giving a 3-2 win for Sandycove!

TEAM 3 played a home match escaping from the unpredictable downpours of rain against a strong Bective 1. In first singles, Meabh Moore had the misfortune to come up against a former Irish junior and tennis coach in Bective and tried her best to win. In third singles, a determined Anne Hayden played a long match and won a point for the team. In first doubles, Ruth Canavan and Jacqui Lyons beat Bective in two sets securing another point. In second doubles, Helen Hughes and Rebecca McNally, lost in a very tight 3 setter match. This left, in second singles, Lisa McGonigle determining the final score for Sandycove as it was now 2 all. Luckily, Lisa McGonigle, won her very long 3 setter match just right at 10 pm winning a point for Sandycove leading to a win for the team, 3-2.

Meanwhile down in Wicklow, TEAM 5 team got off to a flying start in sunny conditions. The matches were closely fought, with Sandycove bagging a 3-2 win against the Wicklow town 3s. Playing at no. 3 singles, Oilbhe Doyle was first off court with a convincing win in straight sets 6-3, 6-1. Eva Bennett, playing at no. 1 singles was next off court. It was a closely fought first set which Eva lost 7-6, and her very strong opponent took the second set. At first doubles, Niamh Byrne & Suzanne Quinn won a closely fought match in 3 sets, taking the 3rd set 6-3. It was a tough game for 2nd doubles Mairead Walsh and Mags O’Keefe. Having lost the first set 6-4, they came back to win the 2nd set 6-3, and lost the third set 6-3. At 2 points each, the pressure was now on Katie Cunningham to secure the win for Sandycove. Playing no. 2 singles, it was a very long and tough match, with Katie pulling off a win in the third set 6-4, much to the delight of her teammates. Katie had just finished her exams that morning, so the team really appreciated her commitment!

Up the road, TEAM 7 had an unlucky start to their campaign coming up against a very strong Glenageary 6. Despite some hard-fought matches our wonderful Sandycove 7s were unable to secure a point. Thanks to Lindsay McMillan, Louise Byrne and Fiona Noone on our singles and Kathy Endersen & Aoife O’Gorman and Trish Desmond & Jen Drury-Byrne on doubles.

Wednesday evening saw TEAM 2 at home against a very strong Rathgar 2. Fantastic tennis to watch with hard fought battles on all courts. Unfortunately however, Nicole Hemerycke was the only Sandycove player to win on the night, neatly dispatching her opponent in two straight sets. Lucy Butler had a particularly close match on court 1 taking the first set tiebreak, before going down to former Sandycove player, Niamh Allen in a thrilling three-setter. Thanks to Linda Walsh for subbing in beside Andrea Begley, and to doubles duo Sarah White and Niamh Pentony for their great efforts.

Wednesday’s away match featured TEAM 6 against a strong Carraig 2 in Blackrock. Jane Boyle, subbing at 1st singles took on a tenacious opponent who won in 2 tightly contested sets while Captain Fiona Kelly had a close first set which could have gone either way before succumbing in the 2nd set. Emma Taylor at 3rd Singles lost the first set 6-3 but really showed her mettle in set 2 before losing out in a tie-break. With Ellen O’Carroll subbing at 1st Doubles with Caroline Grant, this doubles pairing was always going to be formidable opposition. On this occasion, victory proved elusive, and the girls lost both sets with the agonisingly close score of 7-5. Ann Herbert and Catherine Kearney, playing at 2nd doubles, came out on top after a marathon 3 setter. Having won the 1st set comprehensively, the girls were taken by surprise when their opponents clinched the 2nd set with a 7-5 win. However, after a spot of recalibration the girls took no prisoners winning the final set 6-2.


Sundays are also proving busy with our two 5 MILE LEAGUE teams out and about. Sandycove 1, captained by Jeanne Kelly got off to a positive start with a 2-1 win over neighbours Glenageary 1. Always going to be competitive, our 1st pairing, Siobhan and Elaine secured a win in 2 sets while our 3rd pair, Grace and Mary Kate won in 3 sets. At no. 2, Jeanne and Sonja played a match which could have gone either way and were pipped at the post by Glenageary.

Sandycove 1s second match, against Shankill 1s last night, unfortunately went Shankill’s way despite 3 setters and tie breaks but well done to Siobhan Smyth and Mary Donohoe who picked up a valuable point for Sandycove.

Sandycove 2s first game was against Shankill 1s and was lost 2-1. However, the 1 point won by 1st pair, Clare Byrne and Noreen O’Hanlon added to a cracking 3 points secured last night means this team are in good shape with 4 out of a possible 6 points! Playing last night against Meadowvale were above-mentioned Noreen and Clare, captain Kathy Fulcher and new member Rebecca Graydon, and Suzanne Nolan and Carole Crowley.

Well done all and best of luck to our 5 Mile panel in their remaining 3 matches.

Best of luck also to our DLTC teams in this week’s matches.

Sarah & Jenny