O’Brien takes Runners Up spot in Ulster Seniors

John O'Brien

John O’Brien (Castlemartyr)

Castlemartyr’s John O’Brien took second place at the Ulster Seniors in Lough Erne yesterday, the Corkman shot a second round 77 to finish one behind Ballybunion’s Peter Sheehan.  O’Brien also claimed top spot in the 55-59 category.  The Castlemartyr member had held the lead after opening with a two under par 70 on Monday, O’Brien was the only golfer to break par in the first round.  It was looking good for O’Brien but Sheehan played the back nine in two under to leapfrog the Corkman.  Sheehan was the only golfer to master the back nine, effectively sealing the win for the Ballybunion member.  O’Brien has been playing some great golf recently and less than two weeks ago he shot a 66 in Blarney to set a new course record.

Karl Bornemann was just one shot back from Continue reading

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Desmond is King of the South

Sean Desmond South of Ireland Winner_1

South of Ireland Champion Sean Desmond.  Pic: Brian Arthur

Sean Desmond took full advantage of a South of Ireland that was full of shocks to become the 118th winner of the famous championship.  Desmond was a part of those shocks, beating Irish Internationals Conor Purcell and Tiarnan McLarnon.  His  good run started on Wednesday when he shot a five under par 67 in the fine conditions in Lahinch.  Although he followed with a 78 on day two it was enough to finish in the top thirty to get safely through to the matchplay.  There was an impressive list of golfers in the top 64, but after just two rounds of matchplay ten of the top ranked players were gone.  Desmond was part of that, beating Walker Cup panelist Conor Purcell on the 18th green in the second round.  Desmond was on fire on Saturday morning, but that was the standard needed – he was four under through nine holes and all square with Paul Coughlan, he went on to win on the 17th.  Later on Saturday afternoon he took out another international, he beat Tiarnan McLarnon in the fourth round when the match went to the 19th hole.  With his cousin Eoin Sawyer on the bag for the week resilience seemed to be Desmond’s theme for the tournament,  whether it was a big gun or a few bad holes, Desmond took it one hole at a time and battled when he needed to.

Gallery: South of Ireland Saturday

That win on Saturday evening took him through to this mornings semi-final where he faced Sligo native Sean Flanagan.  Desmond was up at the turn but things changed on the back nine when Flanagan went ahead.  Even though Sean’s drive on the 17th ended up on the 15th fairway, he made a great recovery and birdied the hole to get back to level terms.  He went on to birdie the 18th with a clutch five footer to advance to the final.

Sean Desmond Golffile_2

The Champion!  Pic: Thos Caffrey, Golffile

The Monkstown man faced Keith Egan in the final, and his opponent had also slayed a few giants.  The Carton House member had a good start and was two up after three.  Desmond hung in there, the resilience came to the fore again and he pegged back Egan to level.  He went ahead on the 13th but lost his lead on the 16th.  A nine foot par putt on the 17th gave him a lead going up 18. When Egan missed his birdie, that effectively crowned Desmond as the Champion.  It was another amazing five days in Lahinch, with the course, the club, the village and the atmosphere making it one of the most popular events on the calendar.

See the action from the final green below thanks for Brian Keogh:

 

Irwin wins PGA Assistants Championship

Shane Irwin PGA AssistantsMonkstown’s Shane Irwin held his overnight lead to claim the PGA Assistants title in Nuremore yesterday, winning by a margin of five shots over the field.  Rounds of 76 and 72 yesterday were more than enough to keep a healthy distance between himself and the pack as the Limerick native went on to claim his biggest PGA win to date.  Irwin’s impressive 69 and 67 on day one gave him a great start, he had a six shot lead at the halfway stage.

“I didn’t expect to win but I expected to do well.  I went for a lesson with coach Eddie Doyle a couple of weeks ago and I did feel confident,” said the 24-year-old.  “The first day was very good. I played some solid golf in round one. The second round was very similar and I managed to pick up a few birdies.”  Holding the top spot was a new experience for Shane, but he retained a comfortable margin despite much tougher conditions on day two.  “It was tough over the final 36-holes. I had never led a PGA tournament or anything like that.  I tried to stick to the game plan and Continue reading

O’Mahony goes low in Lahinch, South of Ireland Day Two…

Douglas Senior Scratch Cup 2019_Greg O'Mahony_4

Greg O’Mahony after winning the Douglas Scratch Cup earlier this year

Greg O’Mahony was the only Cork golfer to break par on a tough day in Lahinch today.  The Fota Island golfer went around in three under as the wind and rain tested golfers.

A total of eight golfers made the cut for tomorrow’s matchplay.  Peter O’Keeffe finished his 36 holes on one under and Sean Desmond was two shots behind.  Cork duo Gary O’Flaherty and Paul Buckley were both safely through on +2, and Cathal Butler had to endure a short wait before all of the +4’s were safely inside the top 59.  With James Sugrue and John Murphy, there will be a strong Cork challenge tomorrow with eight golfers hoping to make it through the first round.

Gallery: South of Ireland Day 2, strokeplay qualifier second round

Play gets underway at 7am tomorrow, with the second round starting after the completion of the first round matches.  Live scoring will be available at regular intervals.

South of Ireland Matchplay Draw

7.00am: James Sugrue v Jack Doherty
7.36am: Peter O’Keeffe v James Fox
7.45am: Paul Buckley v Shane O’Connor
8.48am: John Murphy v Aaron Ryan
10.18am: Greg O’Mahony v Evan Farrell
10.45am: Sean Desmond v Jack Ryan
11.12am: Cathal Butler v Ronan Mullarney
11.21am: Gary O’Flaherty v TJ Ford

Irwin six ahead in PGA Assistants Championship

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Shane Irwin (Monkstown) 

Monkstown’s Shane Irwin has an impressive six shot lead going into the second day of the PGA Assistants Championship at Nuremore in Co Monaghan.  The Limerick native had two impressive rounds yesterday, shooting 69 and 67 on the par 71 track.  Irwin had the hot hand with nine birdies in the 36 holes.  He opened his second round with a bogey but recovered quickly with two birdies to get into the red for his round.  One more bogey followed on the back nine but he also added four birdies to sign for a four under par 67.

That left him six ahead of the field, St Annes’ Gary McGrane on level par.  Fota Island’s Jack Howard is eight place, and will be hoping to catch up a few places, and Shane Livesey is just outside the top twenty.

The final 36 holes will be completed today.