Junior League Report – U17 & 12

Monkstown entered four teams in the Leinster junior leagues this spring and had some great performances. In the u12 boys league, the team of Daniel Barron, Josh Mackay, Peter Shaw, Theo Claffey Charlie McMorrow Daniel Kelly, Sam McGannon and Charlie Woodcock entered Class 1 which appeared ambitious, but in fact the boys finished joint second and only missed out on qualification as Castleknock firsts had edged them out 2-1 in their fixture so hard luck boys but very well done

In the girls u12 we had a young team – many of whom had not played league matches previously – but the team of Lucy Schwer, Alex Purcell, Isobel Boyne, Monica Doyle, Sarah Ruttle and Isobel Aherne put in some great performances and won a couple of tough matches along the way. This will stand them in good stead for next year

In the u17 league the format was mixed, so we had a Class 1 and a Class2 team. The Class 1 team of boys Fergus O Rourke, David Cullen, Gary Galvin and Rex Lloyd and girls Lucy Byrne, Rachel Hartnett, Julie Ryan and Lily Lloyd were absolutely top class when they could get the girls out, but lads you will have to work on your charm because we found it so difficult to get those girls to turn up at the same time!! The boys were outstanding winning all but one of the boys doubles matches – and that was a champion’s tie break against David Lloyd. Three u14 girls – Anna Schwer, Sarah McAuley and Julie Ringrose stepped up to help out the team on a number of occasions so many thanks girls. In fact the team so nearly qualified! Second spot in the 6 team round robin came down to a championship tie break in the last match in the last fixture against Naas when David Cullen and Anna Schwer were taking on former no 1 in Ireland Eimear Maher and her partner and were up 6-2 in the tie break! However, unfortunately Naas upped their game and prevailed in the end. Great excitement in the club and very well done to the team and thanks to Jackie Byrne who looked after the team so well.

The Class 2 team of boys Harry Crossan, David Keane, Gary Kelly and Alex Boyne and girls Lara Sommerville, Grace Doyle and Claire Doyle supplemented by the u14 girls listed above also so nearly made it – lost out by 1 point in the end. The boys again won all their matches and we had two fantastic mixed victories – Rex Lloyd and Claire Doyle vs Clontarf when they won 7-6 6-7 10-8 to be the only team that beat pool winners Clontarf and David Keane and Claire Doyle (again!) against Malahide when they were down in both tie breaks and came back to win. The girls also had some great matches and improved steadily throughout so well done girls.

All in all it was a very good campaign and many thanks to the coaches and club for all the support and to the team managers Michael McMorrow, Roisin Ryan and Jackie Byrne

The kids all really enjoyed it and we are already seeing the benefits of keeping these juniors playing as they are making the transition to the senior teams very successfully. We had a very young men’s team playing Aer Lingus 1s in summer league in Class 4 last Friday and the opposition was commenting on the problems they have in fielding teams as they do not have juniors coming through. They were very envious of all our youngsters who played so well!