It’s a long way from Clare to Castleconnor but that is the journey that Aoife Quinn will be taking on Sunday as she goes in search of that elusive and historic All-Ireland Juvenile handball title, writes Michael McGee
Sligo handball starlet Aoife Quinn is just one game away from creating Sligo handball history. The Castleconnor club star takes on Kerry’s Michaela O’ Donoghue in the All-Ireland Girls U-15 singles decider in Tuamgraney the home of the legendary Kirby brothers. Quinn defeated Mayo’s Emily Sweeney 15-8, 15-0 in the Connacht final and received a bye in the semi-final. O’Donoghue defeated Kilkenny’s Sarah Molloy in her semi-final. It is the Castleconnor girl 2nd All-Ireland final appearance this year having lost out to Kerry’s Katie Fleming 15-10, 15-5 in the All-Ireland Girls U-15 singles 40 x 20 final in O’Loughlin’s Kilkenny last April.
Quinn has made steady progress in the last number of years winning a number of Connacht College’s titles. Last year Quinn was a member of the Connacht Provincial Girls team of 10 that defeated Ulster in the final. It is a tremendous achievement for the Castleconnor Club who have achieved so much for Juvenile handball in the County. For the past number of years Tom Foody & Aoife’s Dad Oisin have been instrumental in much of the Club’s success at Juvenile level.
Should Quinn win it will even more remarkable as the Castleconnor club don’t have a 60 x 30 court of its own and it means that their rising young star has to travel to the Collooney Club and to Williamstown in Galway for games.
Quinn’s disappointment in the 40x 20 final will drive her on even more and with greater focus and determination should propel her to All-Ireland gold
There could be case of double celebration in Castleconnor on Sunday as Martin Cooney plays in the All-Ireland Silver Masters B singles final in Williamstown.
All-Ireland Juvenile championships 60 x 30 finals
Sunday 19th August 2012
at Tuamgraney, Clare, 12pm
Girls U-15 Singles: Aoife Quinn (Sligo) v Michaela O’Donoghue (Kerry)