Mahon and Bandon were the two big winners over the weekend as they came through the first serious weekend of cups and shields action. Monkstown and Blarney were the host venues for the AIG Jimmy Bruen Shield qualifiers, with fine weather and great conditions adding to the spectacle of matchplay golf. All Ireland winners Kinsale were not in the shake up this time, they lost out to Skibbereen in a first round match the previous weekend. Mahon had also come through a preliminary match the previous week, they had a comprehensive win over Mallow in the first round to set up a meeting with Douglas on Saturday morning. Similar to their previous form, Mahon had a good win over Douglas but they faced a stiff challenge again Cork in the third round and two matches would need additional holes for Mahon to advance. Tim O’Mahoney needed to chip out of the water on 18 in order for himself and Gavin Carroll to half the hole. They went on to win on the 19th. Seamus O’Leary and Denis Kavanagh had to go to the 20th before closing out their match, giving Mahon the all important third point to advance to the fourth round.
Both Mahon and East Cork returned to Monkstown on Sunday morning and it was the city team who prevailed on a 3-2 scoreline. In Blarney there were four second round matches down for decision on Saturday morning. Dunmore, Bandon, Muskerry and Lee Valley advanced at the expense of Skibbereen, Bantry Bay, Clonakilty and hosts Blarney. On Saturday afternoon Bandon beat Dunmore while Muskerry got the better of their neighbours Lee Valley.
Muskerry took a strong hand on the contest early on, and they were up in four matches through seven holes. But Bandon fought back and the match was finely balanced when the final match reached 18. It was 2-2 and the final match was all square. Bandon won on the final green and booked a place in the area final against Mahon. Lee Valley was announced as the venue for the area final which will take place next Thursday (23rd) with the first match off at 3.30pm. There was sad news in Blarney Golf Club on Sunday, Blarney member Jamesie Corcoran fell ill while playing in a member’s competition on Sunday morning and passed away afterwards. The popular member was joined Blarney for over ten years, he was also Chairman and proud member of Rockmount. His death brought a sombre tone to what should have been a great weekend for the club as they hosted the Bruen. Tributes poured in from a huge number of golfers who played with and against Jamesie over the years in Blarney.