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Ulster quartet eyeing Hillsborough glory

 

By John Flack

All four semi-finals at the Johnston Campbell North of Ireland Open will be Ulster versus Leinster shoot-outs after the local hopefuls experienced mixed fortunes in Hillsborough last night.

However, the southern contingent will be expected to hold the upper hand after some impressive performances in the last eight, and the fact they are seeded to win their respective titles.

Top men's seed David O'Hare defeated Hilden's Alex Watt 6-1 7-6 to earn a meeting with last season's runner-up and current Ulster champion Przemek Stec, who beat Bangor man Karl Donaldson 6-4 6-2.

O'Hare's fellow Dubliner, Osgar O'Hoisin, was a 6-3 6-0 winner over local junior Jordan McKeown and will now meet Peter Corrie tonight after the Hilden teen was handed a walkover following the withdrawal of last year's winner Ed Seator due to work commitments.

In the ladies singles event, meanwhile, Ulster champion Lucy Octave and Kerri Russell will carry local hopes in tonight's semis.

Octave had already progressed to the last four after her win over Jessica Leeman on Wednesday, and she will face a revenge meeting with Dundalk's Marie-Perla Biansumba, who beat her last year in Hillsborough.

Biansumba defeated 14-year-old local girl Ciara Hill 6-3 6-0 last night, while Ulster senior inter-pro player Russell was also a comfortable winner, defeating another Dundalk player, Aoife Tonna-Barthet, 6-4 6-1.

Completing the ladies semi-final line-up will be Dublin junior and top seed Caragh Courtney, who beat Ballynafeigh's Christine Duncan 6-4 7-6 to set up a clash with Russell tonight.

Belfast Telegraph

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