Castlemartyr formally launched their Ladies club and after a lot of hard work from the officers and from Brady Sherwood, they commenced club and open qualifying competitions. The ladies club was the final piece of the jigsaw for the East Cork resort as earlier in 2016 that launched a junior club. Muskerry claimed another AIG Jimmy Bruen pennant after some dramatic golf in Douglas. While Mickelson and Stenson did battle in Troon, Muskerry survived a scare against Killarney and booked their place in the final on the third tie hole of the semi-final. In the final they faced Nenagh, and after a shaky start they bounced back like true champions. Muskerry’s Michael O’Callaghan and Jack Taylor closed out the match on the 17th green in front of a huge Muskerry crowd and the celebrations started. It was another tense finish for team manager Sean Cronin who watch his team take every match to the limit before winning.
Lisselan lost out in their Pierce Purcell semi-final, meaning there was only one Cork team going through to the national finals. John Murphy took another major step in his development as a player when he won the Munster Boys at Dromoland. Murphy was under pressure for the last four holes but played aggressively to jump clear of his challengers and claim his first major title.
The month of August signals the Munster finals for many of the Cups and Shields competitions. Mahon and Doneraile were in action in the Mixed Foursomes, with the North Cork side winning their first blue pennant at this grade. Mallow were in action on the double in Newcastlewest, they reached the Junior Foursomes and Fred Daly finals. Unfortunately they came up short, the junior foursomes team won their semi-final on the 19th hole but they lost the final also on the 19th hole. In the Fred Daly they lost out to eventual winners Limerick in the semi-final. Monkstown reached in the Munster finals of the AIG Senior Cup for the second year running, and this year they were battle hardened. Despite a quick start against Ballybunion in the semi-final they slowed up on the back nine but Nick Moore sank the winning putt when he birdied the 19th hole. In the final they faced a strong Castletroy. It looked like an exit was on the cards but the team rallied and it all came down to Sean Desmond. The Monkstown teenager was three up with three to play, but after losing 16 and 17, he won the 18th with a great 40ft lag putt and saw Monkstown win their first Senior Cup pennant in over 50 years.
Cork’s path to their Barton Shield title was a lot more straight-forward. They started with a solid win over Limerick in the semi-final, they had a great win over Tramore in the final. Mark Ford and Brian Kelleher won 4 up and Gary O’Flaherty and John Hickey won by three holes.
Yet again Carton proved to be a tough place for Cork teams as the Co Meath resort hosted the AIG Cups and Shields National finals. Muskerry were first up and they went out in the Jimmy Bruen semi-final. Monkstown came within a whisker of getting through their Senior Cup semi-final, they battled back bravely against a very strong Co Sligo side, but ran out of holes before the side from the West advanced. Cork were dealt a blow before they started in the Barton Shield, they were without their anchor player Gary O’Flaherty who was abroad with work. Paul Tobin came back into the side but Cork were up against it when they faced Warrenpoint. The team from the North won by two holes and went no to take the national title.
Davey Barry had his first win as a pro when he led a strong field at the Rosslare Pro Am, the Assistant who’s in his final year in his PGA studies. Fran Fitzpatrick and Deirdre O’Mahony won the Eileen Murphy foursomes, and Peter O’Keeffe finally broke through. A prolific winner as an amateur, O’Keeffe was still waiting for his first win of 2016 until the third weekend in September. He won the Kinsale Senior Scratch Cup with a four under par 68, and the very next day he won again in Castlemartyr. O’Keeffe proved he still has game, despite the pressure of running a large and expanding fitness business, he finished the year with three wins when he added Doneraile soon after. Mahon put on a great performance in Ballyneety to win the Fred Daly Plate final when they were up against Lahinch.