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Conroy is a worthy champion - The Irish News
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Conroy is a worthy champion

Ray McClean

KEVIN CONROY continued his love affair with the IIBA Champion of Champions tournament in Belfast Indoor Bowls Club last weekend. The Redeemer player won the singles title for the third time and booked his place in the world championships next March.

However, Conroy had to pull out all the stops in the final when he faced Raymond Stubbs. With both players in top form the scores were level after four ends before Stubbs took a two-shot lead.

Conroy replied with a single but another double for his opponent saw him three ahead with only three ends remaining.

With only one end to go the scores were tied 6-6. Stubbs, in a spot of bother, produced a brilliant shot to kill the end and necessitate an extra end. The Ballinderry man was again in the ascendancy and seemed to be lying game when Conroy produced a superb shot to seal victory by a single.

Afterwards the delighted winner said: "Raymond and I have been involved in some close encounters over the years and I knew it was going to be a tough battle. He played superbly and I had to be in top form take the title". In the semis Conroy had defeated Pauline Beattie of St Mark's, Portadown while Stubbs defeated Foyle's Mark Beattie.

Meanwhile, Conroy's clubmates Paddy Hanlon, brothers Stephen and Diarmuid McMahon and Gerry McCabe narrowly failed to triumph in the rinks final. In a thrilling finish the quartet lost by a single shot to brothers Jonny and DJ Wilson, Eddie Campbell and Andrew Leckey who secured a 7-6 victory with the final bowl of the game.

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