Galway handballer Martin Mulkerrins has just won the 60×30 Intermediate singles title 21-7, 21-18 at Croke Park. It was 3rd time lucky for Mulkerrins having previously contested the 2012 and 2014 finals The Tribesmen adds the singles title to the doubles title he won a fortnight ago with Williamstown partner Pat Conway and is the only Galway man to win both titles.
Coming into this game as the overwhelming favourite, Galway’s Mulkerrins had it all to prove and everything to lose.
The first game started on even affair, with Limerick’s JP O’Connor taking a slight lead of 3-1. However, Mulkerrins buckled down and got to grips with the game and began his decent to victory. Though O’Connor was relentless in his approach, the Moycullen man was on top form and took the first game 21-8.
In the second, both men gave it their all, tying the score multiple times, most notably at 4-4, 11-11 & 13-13. It seemed that this one might just go down to the wire and result in a third game. As Mulkerrins took the lead, O’Connor found inspiration from the vocal Limerick crowd a clear margin could not be achieved. Shot by shot and rally by rally, each man played as if for their life.
O’Connor demonstrated what true grit and sportsmanship looks like as he dove, grappled and returned every ball that was humanly possible in the last rallies of the second game. Mulkerrins however just proved too strong as he held his composure and showed nerves of steel by pulling away mark by mark, eventually resulting in a Galway victory of 21-18