TENNIS: Kerri Russell’s stellar season continues with victory in Ballycastle

Kerri Russell won in Ballycastle
Kerri Russell won in Ballycastle

Kerri Russell’s terrific season continued on Saturday as she retained her ladies singles crown at the Co Antrim Championship at Ballycastle.

Russell did so in emphatic style as she beat Julie McManus – formerly Thompson – 6-0, 6-1 without breaking too much sweat.

Russell had earlier won the Co Fermanagh title after helping her ATT team join forces with Bangor to lift the Belfast and District Mixed League trophy.

“To be fair to Julie, she hasn’t been playing too much tournament tennis in recent months, whereas I had, having competed at the Boat Club and at Irvinestown.” she said.

“I played quite well and the most pleasing thing, apart from winning the match, was the fact that I didn’t make too many unforced errors.”

Russell made it a double success when she joined forces with Kathy Cunningham to secure the ladies doubles crown after a 7-5, 5-7, 7-6 victory over McManus and Ashley McVeigh.

The winners staged a stunning comeback in the third set tie break coming back from 0-5 down to take the honours while Gareth and Megan McGreevy beat Russell and Karl Donaldson 6-2, 6-3 to take the mixed doubles title.

Aaron Stubbs also retained his singles title in equally emphatic fashion after scoring a 6-2, 6-1 win over Donaldson in the final.

“I played pretty well to beat Karl quite comfortably but it was more a case of him being a little bit off-form than me having to play out of my skin but I was just happy to get the win.” he said.

David Weir and Mary Parkash lifted the U-18 titles in the junior event while Lydia Kelly and Jordan McKeown took the honours at U-16 level..

This week the action switches to the Co Tyrone Championship in Omagh while the Irish Senior Open takes place in Dublin where Hillsborough teenager Peter Bothwell will be flying the flag for Ulster.

Co Antrim senior championship finals results

Men’s singles: Aaron Stubbs bt Karl Donaldson 6-2, 6-1.

Ladies singles: Kerri Russell bt Julie McManus 6-0, 6-1.

Men’s doubles: Steven Leeman & Andrew McVeigh w/o Michael Blease & Ryan West scr.

Ladies doubles: Kathy Cunningham & Kerri Russell bt Julie McManus & Ashley McVeigh 7-5, 5-7, 7-6.

Mixed doubles: Gareth & Megan McGreevy bt Karl Donaldson & Kerri Russell 6-2, 6-3.

Co Antrim junior championship finals results


U-18: David Weir bt Ryan West 6-0, 6-0; U-16: Jordan McKeown bt Chris Cree 6-3, 6-1; U-14: Rory Cunningham bt Caleb Ralston 7-5, 2-6, 6-4.

U12: Jack Hudson bt Joshua Cree 6-1, 6-1.

U-18 doubles: Paul Bannigan & David Weir bt Benjamin Cree & Kit Saunders 6-4, 6-1.

U-14 doubles: Rory Cunningham & Caleb Ralston bt Harry Ellesmere & Jordan McKeown 6-2, 6-1.


U-18: Mary Parkash bt Lydia Kelly 3-6, 6-4, 4-4 retired.

U-16: Lydia Kelly bt Mary Parkash 6-2, 6-2.

U-14: Parveen Hariri bt Chrissie Bahrani 6-0, 6-0; U-18 doubles: Megan Chambers & Jessica Leeman bt Danielle cameron & Charlotte Wilson 6-0, 6-2.