It’s likely that 2020 will produce few enough golf headlines, but 2020 is the 100th anniversary of the birth of the great Jimmy Bruen Jnr. Born in Belfast, the Bruen family moved to Cork when Bruen was 5, his father took up a job with Dwyer & Co, another family closely associated with golf in Cork. Bruen is associated with both Cork and Muskerry. Although he had played in Cork Golf Club as a teenager, Cork’s rule of not allocating handicaps to those under 18 made Bruen look to Muskerry. He wrote to the club when he was 15, seeking a handicap in line with the Muskerry club rules. According to golf historian Tim O’Brien, Bruen submitted his three cards but was asked to play a round with the club captain before a handicap was approved. Bruen must have impressed in that round as his starting handicap was six. That handicap was god enough to gain entry into the 1935 British Boys in Royal Aberdeen, and with experiences like that, it didn’t take Bruen long to get down Continue reading
John Murphy and James Sugrue both came through the first matchplay round of the British Open yesterday, propelling them into the final 32 with hope increasing of an extended run in Royal Aberdeen. There was a bit of a struggle for both golfers yesterday, Sugrue took a slight lead in his match early on but he had to wait until the 19th before he finally dispatched Australia’s Michael Kyle.
John Murphy too had an interesting round. He level par after three holes but found himself two down. He was two under through six and was still one down. The tide did turn for Murph, by the 13th he had a three hole lead and he added another win on 14. He lost the 15th Continue reading
James Sugrue and John Murphy have both qualified for the matchplay stage of the British Amateur after the opening strokeplay quaifier. The hot shots comfortably made it through along with Robin Dawson, Rowan Lester and Conor Purcell.
John Murphy qualified just outside the top ten, he shot a 69 on the Mulcar Links yesterday to close on +2. Murphy was three under after four holes and steady golf under pressure saw him maintain a solid level of golf. This time last week, he was still only the fourth alternative on the waiting list.
James Sugrue, who is part of the Irish squad at the event, was three shots back from Murphy in 40th place. He shot two rounds of 73 on both Royal Aberdeen and Mulcar Links. Both golfers have proven themselves at the highest levels, Sugrue is the reigning South of Ireland champion while Murphy won the St Andrew’s Links Trophy less than two weeks ago. A good run in the matchplay stages will help their case for selection for the six man Irish team for the European Championships.
There was disappointment for Peter O’Keeffe who missed out on the matchplay stage, he missed the cut by two shots after a disappointing final few holes in yesterday’s second round. The matchplay qualifier (for those tied in 64th place) takes place this morning with the first round proper starting later this morning. James Sugrue is out at 11.08 and John Murphy starts at 13.51.
Cork’s John Hickey will join a select number of Cork golfers this weekend when he takes part in the British Amateur Championship. Hickey will play Royal Portcawl tomorrow afternoon in the first of his two rounds. Hickey was third alternate when the draw was made a the start of the week and soon after he got the official call up. Hickey has had a solid start to the season, and is currently in the top ten in the Munster senior Order of Merit. He had good performances in the Munster Strokeplay and the East of Ireland.
2016 marks the 70th anniversary of Jimmy Bruen’s British Amateur win at Royal Birkdale. Only a select few have qualified to play in the Amateur Championship. Padraig Dooley play twice, Aaron O’Callaghan played when it was held in St Andrew’s and Peter O’Keeffe played in three Amateur Championships. O’Keeffe made it to the final 32 in 2007 when a second round 66 got him through to the matchplay stage. Padraig Dooley also made it to the Continue reading