Offaly All-Ireland winner turns his hand to the tennis court

Justin Kelly


Justin Kelly


Better known as a member of Offaly's 1998 All-Ireland winning hurling team, Birr man Simon Whelahan tasted tennis success at the Abbeyleix Tennis Open Week recently.

It was another successful week under Autumn sunshine for the Shaw's sponsored tournament, and the former full-back was in scintillating form from the back of the court. 

The Birr club man, who is still a regular on the GAA pitches of Offaly as a referee, claimed Men's Singles victory in the Grade 3 portion of the tournament. 

The event had seen players came from all over the country from Athlone right down to Wexford and all counties in between.

The large entry made for some mouthwatering matches, with plenty of awesome tennis filled with tension and drama in all divisions. The spectators each night were truly served up a feast of tennis.

Winners were presented with beautiful towels from Shaws embroidered with the Abbeyleix club name.  

There was further Offaly success as Birr women Paula Quinlan and Christine Bruce won the Grade 3 Ladies Double title. Paula also claimed Grade Mixed Doubles success alongside Abbeyleix club man Roget Munnis.