Silver for Woods twins

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With the Irish selectors due to name the Irish Under 17 squad for the Barcelona Open shortly after the Connacht Open, the competition was the last opportunity for the country’s leading players to secure their places.

Rachael and Rebecca Woods were two that caught the eye as the pair finished with silver medals in the Girls Doubles.

They opened their quest for the title by knocking out Niamh Gannon and Clodna Magowan 21-14 19-21 22-20, the latter pair having brought an end to the challenge of Alpha’s Caitlin Steele and Beth Stephenson. The Woods had to come back from dropping the opening set 22-20 to the top seeds Molly Davies and Jennifer Lalor to snatch the second 21-18 and dominate the decider 21-9.

However, in the final it was very much the Hunterhouse pupils playing catch-up against Clodagh Dunne and Alpha’s Kerri Scott and it was the No2 seeds who romped home 21-10 21-11.

The Girls Singles started so well for the Woods twins as Rebecca recorded an excellent victory over her clubmate Kerri Scott.

She then recorded a 21-19 21-15 victory over Jennifer Lalor to give her a quarter-final against Kate Frost, the top seed from Terenure College. In the 21-8 21-16 defeat, the Alpha player didn’t do herself justice.

Sister Rachael progressed to the semis after being taken to a decider against Niamh Gannon and disposing of Karen Macnamara 21-11 21-10 to set up a clash with top seed Kate Frost. Rachael was unable to avenge her sister and went down to the eventual winner 21-12 21-16.

Caitlin Steele and Jon Mccreedy reached the quarter-final of the mixed doubles where they put in a very creditable performance against the top seeds Kyle Magee and Clodagh Dunne going down 21-17 21-17 while No3/4 seeds Des Duggan and Beth Stephenson were knocked out by eventual winners Paul Reynolds and Kate Frost 21-13 21-19.

There was also disappointment for Regent House pupil Mccreedy as he failed to reach the quarter-final after being seeded No3/4. Alpha’s Conor Monteith lost out to No2 seed Ben Gallagher-Lynch after he had recorded a promising 21-16 21-13 victory over Luke Reilly.

Jon Mccreedy and Matthew Smyth certainly gave the top seeds Ben Gallagher-Lynch and Adam Mcallister a few headaches in the quarter-finals of the Boys Doubles going down 21-19 21-19 in a match lasting 31 minutes.