British Am Dreams still strong for Murphy & Sugrue

John MurphyPicture: Niall O'Shea

John Murphy

John Murphy and James Sugrue both came through the first matchplay round of the British Open yesterday, propelling them into the final 32 with hope increasing of an extended run in Royal Aberdeen.  There was a bit of a struggle for both golfers yesterday, Sugrue took a slight lead in his match early on but he had to wait until the 19th before he finally dispatched Australia’s Michael Kyle.

John Murphy too had an interesting round.  He level par after three holes but found himself two down.  He was two under through six and was still one down.  The tide did turn for Murph, by the 13th he had a three hole lead and he added another win on 14.  He lost the 15th Continue reading

Sugrue and Murphy through in British Amateur

Munster Strokeplay ChampionshipCork Golf Club
Sunday 6th May 2018

James Sugrue

James Sugrue and John Murphy have both qualified for the matchplay stage of the British Amateur after the opening strokeplay quaifier.  The hot shots comfortably made it through along with Robin Dawson, Rowan Lester and Conor Purcell.

John Murphy qualified just outside the top ten, he shot a 69 on the Mulcar Links yesterday to close on +2.  Murphy was three under after four holes and steady golf under pressure saw him maintain a solid level of golf.  This time last week, he was still only the fourth alternative on the waiting list.

James Sugrue, who is part of the Irish squad at the event, was three shots back from Murphy in 40th place.  He shot two rounds of 73 on both Royal Aberdeen and Mulcar Links.  Both golfers have proven themselves at the highest levels, Sugrue is the reigning South of Ireland champion while Murphy won the St Andrew’s Links Trophy less than two weeks ago.  A good run in the matchplay stages will help their case for selection for the six man Irish team for the European Championships.

There was disappointment for Peter O’Keeffe who missed out on the matchplay stage, he missed the cut by two shots after a disappointing final few holes in yesterday’s second round.  The matchplay qualifier (for those tied in 64th place) takes place this morning with the first round proper starting later this morning.  James Sugrue is out at 11.08 and John Murphy starts at 13.51.

Super Sara is Irish Champ

Sara Byrne IRish Close Course Shot June 2018

Sara Byrne (Douglas) during the Irish Women’s Open Stroke Play Championship, Enniscrone Golf Club, Picture: Golffile  Fran Caffrey

Teenager Sara Byrne is the new Irish Women’s Close Champion.  The Douglas golfer beat all before her in Enniscrone over the past three days to claim the prestigious national title.  A 2&1 win over Louise Coffey this afternoon meant that another national title is headed back to Douglas Golf Club.

“This is just amazing, I knew I could do it” said a delighted Byrne.  “When Louise won the 3rd I knew that it was better to be up at the end of the match than at the start, I knew that a one hole difference was nothing so I stayed patient.  This is definitely my number one achievement to date, on the final few holes I got a bit nervous but I told myself that I had worked too hard to give this one away.  This brings my golf career up a step and any event now I play in I can tell myself that I can win because I am Irish Champion!”

The Irish and GB&I capped golfer now joins an elite group, Continue reading

Gillis says Goodbye to Cork after 54 Years

Anthony Gillis Cork Golf Club Jun 2018After 54 years, Anthony Gillis is finally handing over the keys at Cork Golf Club.  The Head Greenkeeper is retiring this month after a lifetime on the famous Alister MacKenzie course in Little Island.  After starting in a temporary role in 1965, Gillis became a full time green keeper soon after and in 1968 he became assistant greenkeeper. That started the labour of love for the Little Island native who lives no more than 300 yards from the Club.  Having grown up on the other side of Island, not far from the eastern side of the course, he has memories of coming in over the quarry and chipping and playing “four-quarters” on the sixth green.  Working under Francis Devane, Anthony quickly learned his trade and he went on to take over the head greenkeeper in the early 1970’s.  After working with famous agronomist James Arthur in the 1970’s, Gillis went on to study in Bingley, Elmwood College and the National Botanic Gardens, giving him a formal background in greenkeeping which complimented his own passion and knowledge for the job.  A lot has changed in six decades and Anthony doesn’t miss the hard physical work that was involved back in his early days.  “The work isn’t as hard Continue reading

Long Read: Liam Burns Celebrates 25 years in Youghal

Liam BurnsLiam Burns is a West Cork man by birth, but after 25 years in Youghal, he surely qualifies as an East Cork man.  Liam is celebrating 25 years as the Club Professional at Youghal Golf Club and after taking up the game in his mid teens, he turned it into a career.  It’s surprising to hear that Liam was a later comer to golf, but once he started he was bitten by the bug.  “I only started playing golf at age 16 with my good friend school teacher Paddy Kehoe” explained the Bandon native.  “Paddy thought me in Hamilton High School in Bandon and his son Mark was single handicap player at the time.  They encouraged me to play golf as my parents didn’t play.  Starting out I would play 36 holes a day sometimes.  Whenever I got a chance I was on the golf Continue reading

Cope Classic Set for Monkstown

DK23052018 CopeFoundation 0011 (002)

Pictured at the launch of the annual Cope Foundation Golf Classic, sponsored by O’Flynn Exhams Solicitors, at Monkstown Golf Club are Micheal O’Mullain, Partner at O’Flynn Exhams Solicitors, Sean Abbott, Chief Executive at Cope Foundation and Stephen Archer, Munster Rugby prop.
Pic Darragh Kane

Cope Foundation recently launched their annual Golf Classic, which returns to Monkstown Golf Club later this year.  After spending almost two decades in Rathsallagh, the classic returned to Cork in 2015 when Monkstown hosted the first event when it came back to Cork.  After successful events in Douglas and Cork, the popular classic now returns to Monkstown for the 2018 staging.  The event is in its 22nd year, and it raises much needed funds for people with intellectual disabilities and/or autism and their families.  Last year’s Golf Classic raised over €40,000, bringing the total funds raised to date to over €1.6 million.  This year’s tournament, which will feature 60 teams, will take place at Monkstown Golf Club on the 28th and 29th of June. To register for the event, visit www.cope-foundation.ie/GolfRegistration. Money raised from the annual event has made a significant contribution towards the essential services Cope Foundation provides to people with intellectual disabilities and/or autism across Cork city and county.  Last year golfers were treated to a great day out in Cork Golf Club.  Fine weather added to the event and there were full time sheets for each of the three scrambles.  The perpetual trophy, given to the leading team from all Continue reading

Murphy wins St Andrew’s Links Trophy

John Murphy Links Trophy 2018John Murphy gave himself an early birthday present today when he won the St Andrew’s Links Trophy, and there was a little bit of a surprise too as he drained a 25 foot putt on first play-off hole to claim his first major title outside of Ireland.  Murphy shot 66 on the Old Course yesterday to hold the 36 hole lead.  A 71 this morning had him tied for the lead with one more round on the Old Course to come.  John started well, birdies on the 3rd and 4th saw him jump into a two shot lead.   He held that lead at the turn but when he dropped a shot on the 13th there was a three way tie for the lead.  East of Ireland winner Christo Lamprecht was leading but a  on the road hole took him out of contention.  Germany’s Jannik de Bruyn shot a 68 to finish on -9.  Murphy parred 14 to 17 and he Continue reading