Scratch Cup Wins for O’Neill, Howard and O’Flaherty

There were three Cork winners over the weekend, David Howard and Gary O’Flaherty won scratch cups in East Cork and Muskerry while Karen O’Neill won the Castletroy Scratch Cup.

Four birdies helped first time winner O’Neill to finish one under par in Castletroy, and she was delighted with the win.  “To be honest I’m delighted with the win, it’s my first win” said O’Neill after the victory.  “I was actually in an accident back in October so I’ve been working hard over the last couple of months to get back playing so I’m delighted.  I missed a short one for birdie on 3 then birdied 4 and 7, had a bogey on 9 then birdied 14 and 15.  I stumbled over the finish line with bogeys on 17 and 18 but thankfully got it done.”

Next up on the ladies circuit is the Ballybunion Scratch Cup which takes place on 27th May.  O’Neill, who works in Fota Island as Assistant Director of Golf is behind an exciting new ladies scratch cup which will take place at the three-time Irish Open venue.  The event is the first amateur competition to be held over all 27 holes in Fota Island.  The competition takes place on Saturday 17th June.

Fota Island

“It’s the first Ladies Scratch Cup at Fota Island” explained Karen who’s a member of the Douglas Senior Cup panel.  “After Cork was cancelled in April myself and Kevin (Morris) were talking about events and there wasn’t much in Cork, so he asked me would I be interested in having one in Fota.  There’s plenty of interest just from word of mouth so we’re advising people to enter as its limited to 39 entries.”

“I don’t know if there has been one on the ladies circuit before but definitely the first one we have held.  We’re starting on the Barryscourt 9 holes, and then onto then onto the Deerpark 18 holes and we’ve included a main course/tea coffee after the 27 holes and a presentation.  As it is the first and we only decided to do it late we have limited it to 39 entries but if it’s successful we will be doing a larger event next year.”

David Howard won his first Senior Scratch Cup in East Cork on Saturday.  Howard shot a one under par 69 to finish one ahead of the field.  The Fota Island golf has been in good form over the last few weeks and his win in East Cork will be a nice boost as the season continues.

Gary O’Flaherty was the winner in Muskerry on Sunday at the RBC Brewin Dolphin sponsored scratch cup.  O’Flaherty added his name to the famous trophy, he had finished in second place on six previous occasions.  The Cork Golf Club member shot rounds of 71 and 74 to lead the field by three shots.  Lee Valley’s Kelan McCarthy was in second place with Colin Maguire (Douglas) in third place.  Muskerry’s Brian Lane took fourth place.

Ronan Caverly from Mahon won the Douglas Intermediate Scratch Cup last Sunday while Cork’s Harry Dillon won the Minor Scratch Cup.  This weekend Charleville host their Junior and Intermediate Scratch Cups.  On Saturday 27th Kinsale will hold their Intermediate and Minor Scratch Cups.

It was also a good week for John Murphy.  The Kinsale man made his first cut on the DP World Tour at the Soudal Open in Belgium.  Murphy made the most of his weekend work.  He was out early on Saturday morning and shot a 65, his lowest score at the top level.  That saw him temporarily inside the top ten.  On Sunday he shot a level par 71 and finished in top 30, tasking home a cheque of over €16,000.  The result will be a big relief to Murphy, breaking a run 12 events without a cheque.  Murphy has this week off as there’s no event in Europe but he’s back in action next week at the KLM Open.

James Sugrue also had a positive week, he was in action in Austria for the weather affected Gosser Open.  The final round was cancelled due to rain but Sugrue made the cut and took home another cheque.  Sugrue is back in Apls tour action in France at the end of June.

There was no joy for Cork golfers at The Island last week during the Flogas Irish Amateur Open.  Peter O’Keeffe was the best Cork finished, but even he missed the cut for the final round.  A few golfers returned to Muskerry on Sunday, but playing five rounds in four days took it’s toll.  After a month of top quality golf in Lee Valley, Cork, Fermoy and Muskerry the focus will change to inter-club as teams start to prepare for the Senior Cup and Barton Shield.