With all the qualifying rounds now complete, the Sandycove Men’s teams did the club proud this Summer league by ensuring at a minimum that we will play in the same or better Classes next year. The standard of tennis has improved year on year, so this makes the achievement even greater.

On the results front we have 4 teams through to the playoffs, with Team 5 & 6 playing the last 16 at home this Wednesday 20th  from 7pm, while Team’s 1 & 3 are through to the quarter-finals which are played this Saturday, 23rd with both matches also at home.  Indeed if the 6th team come through their matches on Wednesday they will also have a home quarter final making it an action packed Saturday at the club!

Please come down and support the teams as Team 1 look to regain their Class 1 status, Team 3 look to book a Class 3 berth, and Team 5 & 6 looking to move up a class as well.  Pennants & silverware will be an added bonus!

Team 4 we’re unlucky not to make the play-off losing out to Glenalbyn on the same total score, while a very strong commendation to Team 2, who despite using 21 subs over 5 matches, managed to stay up in Class 2 for next year.  Thanks to Colin Grant for navigating the team to shore!  Team 7 despite their great start lost momentum but still finished respectively in the middle of the table.  Well done all team!

Stories abound across the courts and Classes over the last few weeks, but the one that will be told for years to come will be how Dave Widger pinned his second serve to his non-receiving opponent’s chest at 15-40,  and 4-5 down in the last set to bring the nervous and often excited Declan Keane safely home in a last set 7-5 victory in round 4, legendary status bestowed on Dave Widger for ever more!  Only Widger or Keano are capable of doing the story justice, see them for the blow by blow account!

Thank you to all Subs, Players & Captains for making the campaign a great success to-date and hopefully we will have plenty more to celebrate in the remaining 2 weeks.

Thanks to all for the great support to date. All support welcomed for the remaining 4 teams this and next week.

Best of luck to all teams for further success



Team 1, Class 2  – v Mount Pleasant 1, Score 4-1, Points to Date = 20

Sandycove 1 faced off against Mount Pleasant 1 in a match rearranged for 11am Saturday to coincide with Wallabies vs Australia (union), Australia vs France (soccer) and Australia vs England (cricket). Very hard to concentrate for one member of the team. Liam Reynolds subbed in at number 1 doubles and played well, himself and Stephen winning 6-2 – 7-5. Our three singles players, Ronan, Rob and Mark won easily and continue to get the job done. Reon and Luke H lost a close doubles game. 4-1 overall, finishing top of the table and into the quarter finals to face Claremont/Railway Union 1 this Saturday at home.


Team 2, Class 2  v Claremount / RUI 1, Score 1-4, Points to Date = 8

No pennants or trophies from this campaign. But mark it down as a great success story for the club. The team picked up one point in its final game to finish on 8 points and stay in Class 2. Sandycove is the smallest club to have a 2nd team at this level and succeeded in staying there where others failed. 21 members in total represented the team in what must be a club record. 14 different members happily stepped forward to sub despite often playing far above their level. Gary Byrne was the sole player to sub twice. He missed a flight and had to spend 10 hours waiting in a Chinese airport for the next one. He made the journey home and still stepped forward to sub in his second Class 2 league match. And we can be sure that others would have done the same.

Overall, this was a remarkable club effort. The character and spirit of a club is not measured by the number of pennants on the wall but by the willingness of its members to come together and support each other and triumph in adversity such as this.

Team 3, Class 4 v Carrickmines 4, Score 3-2, Points to Date = 20

Sandycove men’s third team travelled to play Carrickmines 4 and encountered a bewildering array of tennis court options. Doubles pairings Ken Browne and Mark Cunningham, and Paul Kilduff and Paul Fitzgerald, each won their doubles in 2 sets on hard courts. Roy Bailey won his singles in 2 sets on a grass court and afterwards still had time for a friendly knock with Ken on their favourite grassy surface. Andy Ward (also on grass) and Keith O’Byrne (on an indoor court) suffered rare singles defeats. Thanks go to our two away supporters – club captain Liam (in full cycling gear) and Sheila (to ensure her son won.)  The 3rd team finished top of their section with 20 points and have a bye into the playoff match to decide promotion to class 3 on Saturday 23rd, when alas three of our players will be away.

Team 4, Class 4  v Malahide 7, Score 5-0, Points to Date = 14

STC 4 needed the big 5 to stand chance of qualifying. All 5 points delivered vs Malahide 7 without even a set dropped. Well done to singles (Philip, David Murphy subbing and Frank). Doubles combos were Maurice & Conor and subs Shane Gill and Paul Murphy. Well done especially to all the subs to secure the 5. We finished joint 2nd but missed out narrowly having lost 3-2 to Glenalbyn 1. Good campaign and very unlucky not to qualify.  Well done team.

Team 5, Class 6  v Celbridge 4, Score 5-0, Points to Date = 23

The fifth team had our final group game away to Celbridge.  Both teams were already qualified for the play offs with Sandycove needing just 2 points to top the group.  John F. again subbed in for us and secured a great  6.4 6.4 win at number 3 singles. Alan Warren moved up to number 1 singles and Sam Totterdell moved to number 2 singles in the absence of Colin Wardlaw. Both Alan and Sam continued their excellent form with both chalking up two set wins.

So with 3 wins secured we knew that we had topped the group but we wanted a clean sweep . Dermot Bennet and Dave Hanley were next and notched up their fifth win out of five so far in the campaign against a strong pairing. It was left to captain Joe Cunningham and Jim Brady to complete the whitewash. They struggled over the line … but both agreed afterwards that their result was never in doubt !!!.  23 points out of 25 . Play off match on Wednesday 7pm at Home against Newtown park ..

Team 6, Class 7 v Charleville 4, Score 5-0, Points to Date = 25

After a few showers in the morning the sky’s cleared and a big rainbow appeared over Charleville for Seal Team 6s last group stage match. In the singles, Tom O’Higgins after a rocky start came through to win 6-4 6-2. I’m pretty sure Pat Leamy was wearing Stephens shorts as he cruised to a 6-3 6-3 win. Sean Cronin inspired by Taylor Swift playing in nearby Croke pk won  6-0 6-1

Tim McNichols and Simon-Hugh Jones seemed in a hurry to watch the soccer ball and won easily  6-1 6-1.  I dont know if its chalk and cheese or its peas and carrots but the doubles partnership of Liam Hurley and Declan Keane provided the most dramatic match of the day, after losing the first set 4-6 the two old warriors decided to turn their attention to their opponents and won the next two sets 6-2 6-2.

Well done lads 25 matches 25 wins and onto the playoffs, at home this Wednesday, 8.15pm

Team 7, Class 7 v Clontarf, Score 1-4, Points to Date = 7

Clontarf the group winners came to Sandycove having already clinched a playoff spot.  Sandycove after a bright start to the campaign wanted to finish on a high. A 1-4 result could have been  3-2, but alas fine margins again. Well done to Philip Bayfield for taking a scalp, ensuring Class 7 status again next year! Many thanks for all players and subs.