09 Feb 2012

Irish eyes are smiling in San Diego

News Article

Photo: Fred MullaneLesley O'Halloran (IRL)

SAN DIEGO, USA: Wednesday saw the final round of matches in the Seniors World Team Championships with the Irish women’s 45 team providing the biggest shock of the event so far. Sixth seeds Ireland beat top seeds USA in a thrilling encounter, meaning they remain unbeaten and top Group A in the Margaret Court Cup. Defending champions USA got off to the perfect start with Mariana Hollman beating Phillippa Palmer to win the opening rubber. Current world number eight Lesley O’Halloran levelled the tie for the Irish with victory over Shelly Works and then paired up with Palmer in the decisive doubles.  The Irish pair stormed through the first set and survived a strong fightback in the second to secure victory and send their team into the top knockout playoff. The Irish ladies will be looking to clinch Ireland’s first ever ITF Seniors Team cup title as the event progresses over the weekend.

Group C of the Margaret Court Cup saw another surprise as seventh seeds South Africa beat third seeds Great Britain to finish top of the group. Ralene Buys and Ronel Louw both won their singles rubber to secure victory and top spot for the Springboks.

There were no such shocks in the men’s events with all of the top seeds progressing seamlessly into the knockout stages. Top seeds USA are looking ominous in the Fred Perry Cup (men’s 50's) having won both their round robin matches without dropping a set and for the loss of only nine games. It’s a similar story in the Tony Trabert Cup (men’s 40’s) where the Americans, led by Jeff Tarango, have also not yet dropped a set.  However the American’s will not have all their own way in this age category with a number of strong European teams looking to mount a challenge for the title. Second seeds and defending champions France, third seeds Germany and fourth seeds Spain are all through to the knockout stages.

With the round robin matches completed the teams now playoff for their final positions in each event. For latest results please click here.