Last 16 for O’Keeffe in North

Peter O'Keeffe

Peter O’Keeffe

The O’Keeffe train kept on pulling today.  After well over a week on the road Peter O’Keeffe put together back to back wins in Portstewart today to get through to the last 16 in the North of Ireland.  He had another action packed day today, at 8.03am he was on the first tee facing Eoghan Collins.  A steady performance saw him dispatch the Laytown & Bettystown member on the 16th.  This afternoon he faced Rosslare’s Ian Lynch, and the Douglas man got off  to a flier winning four of the first seven holes.  O’Keeffe held his lead before eventually winning 3&1.  He’s now safely through to tomorrow’s third round where he’ll face Tandragee’s Jake Rowe.

After spending most of last week in Lahinch where he was working with Robin Dawson, O’Keeffe left Co Clare on Sunday to head for the North, where he had an afternoon tee time for the first round in Castlerock.  A poor start on Monday (+5) was followed by a very impressive 69 on Tuesday when he played on Portstewart’s championship links.

Paul Buckley had a good win this morning when the Kanturk native had a 4&2 win against Barry Cashman.  That saw him face Geoff Lenehan in the second round. Buckley was one up early doors but Portmarnock’s Lenehan, who was tied as the strokeplay leader battled hard and won 4&2.

Cathal Butler was a casualty in this morning’s first round.  Despite a bright start which saw him go two up on Aaron Edwards Hill, the Englishman fought back and beat Butler on the 17th.

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O’Keeffe, Butler & Buckley through in North of Ireland

Peter O'Keeffe

Peter O’Keeffe

Peter O’Keeffe staged a huge recovery at the North of Ireland today, jumping over 100 places on the leaderboard to make it into the matchplay stage of the provincial championship.  O’Keeffe, who only arrived in Portstewart yesterday after a week in Lahinch, needed to dig deep after an opening 78 (+5) in Castlerock yesterday.  And the big hitting Douglas golfer did just that, shooting a three under par 69 to finish inside the top 40, with two shots to spare from the cut mark of +4.  It wasn’t plain sailing for O’Keeffe on Portstewart’s Strand course, host of the 2017 Irish Open.  The 2017 Irish Open winner was two over after three holes, but two birdies and an eagle over the next four holes got him back in track.  A handful of pars followed until he dropped two more birdies on the 14th and 17th.  A bogey on the last meant he signed for a 69 and at that stage O’Keeffe was thinking it Continue reading

Home win for Ward in Kinsale

Gary Ward who won the Kinsale Senior Scratch Cup on Saturday.Gary Ward scooped the Kinsale Senior Scratch Cup yesterday, but only after the winner was decided on the 19th after a play-off.  It’s a fourth scratch cup for the Kinsale man, but it’s the first since 2017 and will no doubt be a welcome return to the winners circle.

After a gap of a year, the Kinsale Scratch Cup returned, and the organisers had a strong field assembled.  And thanks to the club and sponsors ODC Advisory they also had an attractive prize pot on offer.  With fine weather in Kinsale, the scoring was expected to be low but the 7,000 yard championship course proved to be a good challenge for the 50+ golfers taking part.

Ward led the scoring after the first round.  He shot a two under par 70 and was alongside Karl Bornemann on -2.  Shane Kenneally and Zak Collins Continue reading

Pro Shop Challenge IV, Kinsale Golf Club

Kinsale Pro Shop Challenge 3_July 2018

Cathal Butler and John Murphy (centre) pictured with Ian Stafford and Ger Broderick at the Pro Shop Challenge at Kinsale last week. Picture: Aidan Stafford

Kinsale’s Pro Shop Challenge is back, and the fourth staging of the charity fundraiser is set for a change with the pro’s taking on the internationals in August.  The Kinsale Pro team remains the same, Ger Broderick and Ian Stafford are currently in training in the hope of winning back the title they lost last year.  The line up on the other side has changed though, the amateurs are now restyled as the “internationals” and it also features a change in the line up.  14 year old Eoghan Cassidy will line up with John Murphy.  Murphy is currently on the senior Irish team while Cassidy is on the Irish Under 14 and Under 16 squads.  The event takes place on Thursday 15th August, and there should be a great afternoon of golf and fun.  Ian Stafford has been the driving force behind the event, from a small start in 2016, the event has raised well over €11,000 for the charity partners.  Keen to keep the event moving, Ian proposed a change to the format this year.  “This year we are celebrating the fact that Kinsale Golf Club has had 2 International Golfers in the past twelve Continue reading

Super 65 for Butler in Co Sligo, Flogas Irish Amateur Open

AIG Senior Cup Area Semi Finals 2018 Cork Golf Club Sunday 24th June 2018A birdie three on the last hole was the perfect finish to Cathal Butler’s round in Co Sligo today, as he signed for a 65 after a great second round.  Butler, who had a four over par 75 in his opening round, got to work early today and was three under through five holes.  He added another two birdies before the turn to go out in 31 (-5).  Although he had a few good birdie chances on the back nine he ended up with eight consecutive pars. He did close out on the 18th with a birdie, leaving him on -2 and tied for 20th at the halfway stage.  Needless to say the Kinsale golfer was in a positive frame of mind after his round.  “It was a relief as much as anything – it feels like a long time since I shot a low one” said Butler after the round.  “I was hitting it lovely, I only missed one green and hit a lot of the shots close.  The putter was steady throughout and it was nice to hole a long one on 18 to finish.”  Butler has been struggling with a back injury for the past while and that has contributed to his lack of recent appearances near the top of the leaderboard.  “I’m off around 2pm tomorrow so I’ll get a chance to go to the gym before hand.  My back has been troublesome for the past few weeks so I’ll do some exercises before I go out to play.”  As for the strategy for tomorrow, it more of the same for Cathal.  “I’ll just keep trying to make good decisions and smooth swings.  If I can stay as relaxed as I was today it should be another good day.”

James Sugrue followed his opening 70 (-1) with a two over par 73 today.  The Mallow man had a colourful back nine, comprised of two pars, three birdies, three bogies and an unfortunate double on the par five 12th.  He’s just inside the top 50, and a good round tomorrow should see him through to Sunday.  The 54 hole cut after tomorrow’s third round will see the top 50 (plus ties) go forward for Sunday’s final round.  Mel Deasy, back at the venue where he led the qualifier for the West just a few weeks ago has found the going a little tougher.  Rounds of 72 & 74 has him Continue reading

Cork set for Munster Strokeplay

Munster Strokeplay Championship
Cork Golf Club
Sunday 6th May 2018Alan Fahy returns to Cork this weekend to defend his Munster Strokeplay title.  Cork Golf Club will play host to the 72 hole event on Saturday and Sunday, and although some of the Irish Team are in Lytham, the field is the deepest ever with the cut falling at +0.4.  The marquee three ball tees off at 9.40, it contains the champion Fahy, the 2018 runner up Robbie Cannon and Portmarnock’s Geoff Lenehan.  The three have all shown promise this year and will be hoping for a positive start in Cork on Saturday.  Keith Egan from Carton House is the lowest handicapped golfer in the field, playing off an impressive mark of +3.0.  Gary O’Flaherty, Ian O’Rourke and Ian O’Flynn are the leading contenders from the home club while Kanturk native Paul Buckley has recently joined the club and will be hoping to build on good form from last weekend in Lee Valley.

Cathal Butler, Eoghan Long and 16 year old Mel Deasy are among the other locals who may challenge on Sunday afternoon.  Deasy hit the Continue reading

Sugrue the best of Cork in Co Sligo

Investec Muskerry Senior Scratch Cup Muskerry Golf Club
Saturday 30th March 2019

James Sugrue

James Sugrue is the best of the Cork golfers at the halfway stage of the West of Ireland Championship in CO Sligo Golf Club. The Mallow man shot a two under par 69, helped along the way with an eagle on the back nine. Sugrue started smartly with an opening birdie but a seven on the par five 3rd hole set him back. He recovered with a birdie on the fifth and his eagle on the 12th brought him back into the red. Added to his opening 72, Sugrue is on -1 at the halfway stage – tied for fourth place. He’s four shots behind joint leaders Caolan Rafferty and Max Kennedy.

Mel Deasy added another 73 today to finish +4 in a tier for 30th place. The leading qualifier was three over after his front nine, but came back in one under to match yesterday’s score.

They are the only two golfers inside the top 50, the cut line after tomorrow’s third round. Greg O’Mahony and Gary Ward are just one shot outside the top 50 on +8 (T56) while Sean Desmond is a shot further back, currently placed T76. It was another tough day for Peter O’Keeffe, he shot a 78 which makes qualifying for Sunday a big ask. Cathal Butler also suffered after a horrendous front nine, which put paid to his chances. Kieran Murphy, Keith Fitzpatrick, Padraig O’Connor and Eric Rumley are all outside hopes for making it through to Sunday, but they do have one more round at the famous links to post a memorable score.

West of Ireland Championship Leaderboard

O’Keeffe wins Investec Muskerry SSC

Investec Muskerry Senior Scratch Cup Muskerry Golf Club Saturday 30th March 2019

Peter O’Keeffe in action in the Investec Muskerry Senior Scratch Cup today. Pic: Niall O’Shea

13 years after his first win, Peter O’Keeffe added a second Muskerry Senior Scratch Cup title to his growing haul of wins.  The Irish International led from the start, a five under par 66 this morning saw him set the tone and take a one shot lead into the second round.  A birdie on the second hole was struck out by a bogey on the 6th, but that would be his only mistake.  The Douglas golfer bounced back with an eagle on the next hole and a birdie on the 8th saw him turn on -3.  Two more birdies on the back nine gave him a one shot lead over James Sugrue.

Both Irish Internationals were level after the opening hole in the second round, but O’Keeffe kicked on with a birdie on the second and never looked back.  Sugrue bagged several birdies but balanced that with a handful of bogies that prevented him from catching his playing partner.  Cathal Butler continued his positive form with rounds of 69 & 70.  That was good enough for third place and valuable points on the Munster Order of Merit.  O’Keeffe also takes the lead in the Munster Order of Merit as a result of today’s win.

Gallery: Investec Muskerry Senior Scratch Cup 2019

Muskerry Senior Scratch Cup Presentation_1

Peter O’Keeffe (Douglas) receiving the Muskerry Senior Scratch Cup from Michael O’Connor (Investec). Also included are Marian Nugent (President) and Diarmuid Linehan (Captain), Muskerrry Golf Club.
Picture: Joe Lane

The story of the afternoon belonged to Kinsale’s Shane Kenneally.  He produced a best of the day round of 64 (-7).  Four birdies on the front nine, an eagle two on the 11th hole, and a birdie on the 18th saw him recover from an opening 77 to take 4th place overall.  Cork’s Gary O’Flaherty was 5th (141, -1) in his first competitive event of the season.  The nett prize went to Muskerry’s Zak Collins, a second round 70 saw him finish on -5 (nett).

Muskerry was in great condition for the showpiece event, the ground was a bit on the soft side but overall the course was great with the greens rolling nicely.  This marks the start of a busy few weeks for Cork’s top golfers.  While some will be heading for Co Sligo next week, both East Cork (Sat) and Fota Island (Sun) are holding Senior Scratch Cups.  The qualifiers for the Ford Muskerry Junior Scratch Trophy also take place on Friday and Saturday next with times still available on both days.

Investec Muskerry Senior Scratch Cup 2019

136 Peter O’Keeffe (Douglas) 66 70
138 James Sugrue (Mallow) 67, 71
139 Cathal Butler (Kinsale) 69, 70
141 Shane Kenneally (Kinsale) 77, 64; Gary O’Flaherty (Cork) 72, 69; Jack Egan (Muskerry) 71,70
142 Sean Leonard (Mitchelstown) 71,71; Ian Bermingham (Douglas) 68,74
144 Andrew McCormack (Castletroy) 73,71; Philip Spratt (West Waterford) 71,73; David Fitzgerald (Tralee) 71,73; Jack McDonnell (Forrest Little) 70,74
145 Zak Collins (Muskerry) 75, 70; Fionn Hickey (Muskerry) 74,71; Noel McGee (Fota Island) 73,72;  Rory Fives (Faithlegg) 73,72; Paul Tobin (Douglas) 72,73
146 Ian Spillane (Killarney) 75,71; Rory Milne (Faithlegg) 71,75
147 Alan Moriarty (Macroom) 74, 73
CSS Round 1:71
CSS Round 2:71

Munster win Interprovincial Chamionship in Athenry

Interprovincial Championship 2018

The winning Munster team pictured with Team Captain Michael Coote receiving the trophy from John Moloughney, President GUI, picture Fran Caffrey, Golffile.

There was a dramatic finish to the Interprovincial Championship this afternoon, with Geoff Lenehan again sealing a win for Munster.  The Waterville member won the crucial point in 2012 and 2014, and he was at the centre of the action again in Athenry, winning his singles match to give Munster the win against Leinster and the title.

Munster went into day three with a narrow lead, all four teams had one win each, with Munster ranked first on the basis of matches won.  The meant that a win for Munster should have been enough to seal the title.  The foursomes didn’t quite go to plan, with Munster trailing 3-1 at lunchtime.  The only win came from O’Keeffe and Lenehan.  Munster came out firing in the singles though, with Peter O’Keeffe and James Sugrue claiming the first points.  Munster needed five of the seven points to claim the title and with two in the bag the odds favoured the men in blue.  Eanna Griffin brought in a third point and while Andrew McCormack lost, John Hickey won to make it 4-1 with two matches on the course.  Both playing the final Continue reading

Super 69 from Rumley to lead Leinster Students

AIG Barton Shield Munster Final 2018
Thurles Golf Club
Sunday 19th August 2018Eric Rumley came home in three under in Killeen today to sign for a 69 and lead the Leinster Students after the opening round.  Fresh from helping Kinsale to their first AIG Barton Shield title in Thurles on Sunday, the Kinsale man opened with a birdie but gave shots back on the third and fifth holes.  A birdie on the ninth got him back to even par, and set him up for the impressive back nine.  Birdies on the 12th and 13th got him into the red and a final birdie on the par three 18th saw him tie for the lead.  Stackstown’s John McCarthy is also on -3 while there are ten more golfers within three shots in the 54 hole tournament.

Gary Ward is in the top 15 on +3 while Darren Hourihan is in the top 30 two shots back.  The second round gets underway tomorrow morning with the top 45 plus ties qualifying for Friday’s final round.  The holder is John Murphy but he’s unable to defend his title as he returned to the University of Louisville last week.

Leinster Students Amateur Open Championship  Continue reading