Day 5 of the 2019 Irish Open was not short on drama or outstanding croquet delivered breathlessly by a diverse cast of players in favourable conditions. Once again, an extended crew delivered a sumptuous afternoon tea.
An early morning Green Cup match saw Myles McWeeney overcome the challenge of 2018 winner Alan Looney by 17 hoops to 15. A simultaneous double-banked contest on lawn 3 resulted in a Sandy Knuth win over Linda Sudderberg by a margin of 15 hoops to 13.
On lawn 4, the USCA Salver witnessed a Val Terry win versus Martin Gilmartin whilst Mary Rodeberg was the victor over Sylvia Briggs (25-10). The USCA Salver also featured a John McAuley win over Anne Marie McGowan and a Diana Stephens victory over Dalkey's Padraig Thornton. Robert Miller would later meet Geraldine O'Rourke in a keenly contested match, Robert the victor there by a much valued golden hoop.
In a Duff Matthews clash of two heavyweights, David Maugham dispatched multiple former winner and bookies' favourite Simon Williams from the Championship proper - the English sharpshooter executing two triple peels in the best of 3 matches.
Also in the Championship, Sandy Greig beat Andrew Dutton (+4, +23); Nathaniel Healy bested David Boyd, and Patsy Fitzgerald knocked out American Tom Cooper in a come-from-behind victory that had neutrals enthralled. Randy Cardo saw off Danny Huneycutt 2-0, with a superb triple in the first game.
In the Alternate Shot Doubles, Hamptworth pair Diana and Richard Stephens displayed consummate shot-making and controlled precision in knocking out Loretta Cooper and Mary Rodeberg by 10 hoops to 9.
Karen Davidson-Perrins teamed up with David Maugham to dispatch local favourites Sylvia Briggs and Sheila Glennane. The winning pair were later to meet Sandy Greig and Anne Woulfe-Flanagan who won out in a tight battle of no little skill.
Nigel Werner met Loretta Cooper in a Green Cup clash on lawn 2, with Carrickmines clubman Werner gaining the upper hand in a match of high quality.
An Alan Looney Dawn Jupin face-off in the Green Cup saw Jupin taking the spoils on Lawn 1 while Conor O'Sullivan was denied victory by a Linda Sudderberg masterclass.
Gerard Osborne Burke - that master tactician, triumphed over Beverley Cardo in the Green Cup with Rich Schiller winning versus Richard Stephens in an Anglo-US affair.
The handicap singles semi-final on lawn 2 lacked for nothing, with David Boyd enjoying a great win over Irish kingpin Andrew Johnston, by 26 hoops to 15.
In the final match of the evening, some 2 ball croquet saw Dave McGrath eclipse Nigel Werner 26-17 in a Green Cup clash.
Full results at Croquet Scores.