O’Driscoll tops leaderboard but loses out in play-off, Gecko Tour

Golf_Tommy O'Driscoll_2

Tommy O’Driscoll.

Castlehaven native Tommy O’Driscoll came agonisingly close to his first professional win on Tuesday when he lost out in a three way play off at the Gecko Tour in Estepona in Spain.  This was O’Driscoll’s second event on the Gecko Tour, he finished 21st last week in Marbellla when fellow Irishman Dermot McElroy finished in second place.

O’Driscoll shot one his lowest rounds as a pro, his seven under par round of 64 match the lowest score of the tournament and catapulted him up the leaderboard.  Tommy’s first round score of 68 saw him start the second day just outside the top ten.  Despite shooting the low round of the day, Tommy wasn’t overly happy with his own performance on the front nine: “I didn’t play great golf for the front nine, just scrambled by way around and got it going in the back nine”.

Tommy had a great back nine, knocking in five birdies in seven holes.  His scrambling on the front nine is worthy of a mention too, after a Continue reading

Injuries behind Turner as 2017 Season Starts


Niall Turner pictured with his dad Pat at Muskerry over Chistmas

Niall Turner starts his 2017 campaign this week and he’s hoping for a good start as he makes his return from an injury ridden 2016. After losing most of the 2014 season after surgery on his hip, Turner had a very strong 2015, but he suffered a re-occurrence of the injury again early last season. In 2014 Turner had surgery to correct a condition called femoral acetabular impingement (FAI) that he had suffered from for a few years. Unfortunately for the Waterfall native, the bone spur involved grew back causing the same mobility problems. 12 months ago Turner was fully fit and full of hope, he had retained his tour card in Asia and started in a far better category which assured him of plenty of top level starts. That’s where the good news Continue reading

Munster Golf update Handicap Committee Advice

Munster Golf LogoMunster Golf have just released an updated list of key points for club handicap committees.  The initiative follows a commitment made at the Annual Delegates Meeting to continue the efforts to stamp out handicap cheating.

The eight page document includes a very important piece on the mandatory reporting of all golf scores – including non qualifying events.  There is a feeling that not all golfers of club officials realise the obligations that are already in place regarding the reporting of scores.  The document also contains important references to the Rules of Golf and the CONGU rulebook which should help to educate and empower Handicap Secretary’s, Competition Secretary’s and everyone involved with competitions at club level.

Reporting Scores – Mandatory – Home or Away – All forms of Golf
(b) Non Qualifying Scores. – 4 Balls/ Scrambles/Classics/Societies – Relevant clauses are at (4.5(b), pg 19), (8.10 + 8.12, pg 24), (23.7 IrelandNote- pg 51) Direction from Union to report NQ Scores for immediate consideration/action for General Play Adjustment (Except Category 1 players). NB: In Ireland Players and Clubs must report Non Qualifying scores to Home Clubs: See 8.12 GP Adjustment based on Nett Diff, with Clause 19 adjustment if necessary, and SSS. This is a GPA and can not take effect until the player is notified personally agreed method, 23.5) Players who fail to comply with their obligations or responsibilities may be dealt with under Clause 24.1 pg 55 All other forms of Golf are for consideration as notable using the guidelines as set out in Appendix M at Page 86

Full text of Munster Golf’s Key Points for Handicap Committees:



Castlemartyr Jump Starts 2017


Looking back on the 18th fairway at Castlemartyr Links

Castlemartyr Golf club jump started the new year, by adding over 150 new members before 2017 started.  The new members consist of both ladies, and gents and this puts the resort in a very strong position as the annual battle to attract and retain members heats up.  The large intake of members in the mens club resulted from a members invite special offer and this was fully subscribed.  Having gained their ILGU affiliation in 2016 the number of lady members has grown steadily over the past 12 months and already 25 ladies have signed up to the special 2017 offer that sees ladies join for a special introductory rate of €599 for their first year with no joining fee.  While membership for the Men’s club is currently closed, the Ladies club is open for membership with the special introductory offer available until the end of this month.  The innovative scheme where existing members could nominate new members was spear headed by Castlemartyr’s Head PGA Professional Brady Sherwood and the Continue reading

Captain Lee Looking forward to 2017


Castlemartyr Captain Michael Lee presents Greg Allen with a gift following the very successful members evening with Peter Alliss in December

Castlemartyr Captain Michael Lee and his committee should have a great but busy year ahead of them.  With over 150 new members, Castlemartyr has now entered the major leagues in term of managing club competitions and inter-club events.  “This is going to be a very busy year for myself as Captain and for my Committee” said Michael, “but I am looking forward to the challenge ahead this year, I have a good mix of experienced and new people on my committee and we are looking forward to helping all members of the club to enjoy a good golfing year ahead.”

With a new ILGU affiliated Ladies Club in addition to the new male members, Castlemartyr should find themselves competing at all levels of inter-club competitions.  Castlemartyr reached the Munster finals of the AIG Senior Cup in 2014 so they will be hoping to match that achievement in one of the five GUI Cups and Shields competitions.  “As Captain I am really looking forward to the teams events this year” said Michael, “for the first time in the clubs short history we will be putting in a mixed foursomes team for competition.  With all the members we have now I expect a lot of competition for all the team events.”

And he also added his support for the investment in machinery that took place in 2015: “The owners have bought a lot of new machinery to keep the course going in the great condition it is in at the moment, and to hopefully have Continue reading

2016 a Year to Remember for John Murphy

munster-golf-adm_awards_114Kinsale’s John Murphy capped off a great year last week when he announced that he would be heading to the US in the second half of 2017 on a golf scholarship.   Later this year Murphy will head for Kentucky to take up a place with the Cardinals at the University of Louisville.   Murphy will join Galway’s Devin Morley who started in Louisville in 2016, and Assistant Coach Aaron O’Callaghan who is in his third year coaching at the division one college.

The announcement of Murphy’s move to the US had been one of his options over the past few months, and while there are exciting times ahead, John can look back at a great 2016.  “I have so many memories from 2016 that I will cherish forever” said Murphy.  “There are some stand-out memories from 2016, such as winning the European Boys’ D2 championships in Czech Republic and retaining the Kerry Continue reading

Murphy First Golfer to win Twice

John Murphy April 2016John Murphy became the only golfer to win the Munster Junior Golfer of the Year in November.  Murphy picked up his second successive award from Munster Golf having also won the Boys Order of Merit.  Having competed in all of the provincial events at Boys and Youths levels, Murphy gave himself every chance of performing well in the Order of Merit.  He scored well in the Irish Youths and the Irish Boys which ultimately separated him from the other contenders.

Murphy was delighted to be the first golfer to win the award more than once.  “It was a great honour to receive this award once, not to mind twice” said John.  “This time two years ago I was playing off about five and had been pretty unsuccessful in championships, with no real status on the boys scene.  I am delighted with how far I have come in the last 2 years.  Winning this award twice was something that was far from my thoughts in 2014.  It is great to see that the Muster GUI have acknowledged my golf with this award in the last two years, and I am very grateful for this.  It is very special for me that I was the first ever person to win this award twice in a row, and I will never forget Continue reading

High Hopes for 2017

After a poor start, 2016 seemed to behave itself, so it’s fair to say that everyone is hoping for more of the same in 2017.  Last year will be year that is remembered as the year when membership and revenues stabilised.  While that was positive for clubs, it was also very positive for courses.  After six years of falling membership it was a relief for the industry and the recovery has started.

cork-gc-tweet-31st-dec-2016On course, 2016 had a very slow start with record rain-fall levels meaning that there was no play until late February.  After that though the season got underway pretty quickly, and the mild weather in the past three months has allowed clubs to catch up on the slow start.

The signs from clubs and courses are that they have moved from neutral to positive, with almost everyone driving on with their development plans.  Fota Island Academy have launched a new membership scheme which transforms the previous model, Lee Valley invested heavily in machinery and course inputs, as did many other clubs.  Cobh led the way with nine hole open competitions and Skibbereen offered an innovative pay and pay membership option.  Castlemartyr face into the new year after adding over 100 new Continue reading