Win No 3 for O’Flaherty in Lee Valley

Lee Valley Senior Scratch Cup 2018, Lee Valley Golf Club.  Final Round, Saturday 22nd April 2018

Gary O’Flaherty, winner of the Lee Valley Senior Scratch Cup for the third time. Picture: Niall O’Shea

Gary O’Flaherty claimed his third Lee Valley Senior Scratch Cup title today when he shot a steady level par round to maintain his lead and take the title.  Starting with a two shot lead, many would have thought O’Flaherty would have needed a 70 or better.  But the weather conditions in Lee Valley hampered everyone, and while the course was in great condition the harsh wind played a big role.  Gary’s lead went to three after the second hole when Ronan Mullarney bogied, and he maintained that cushion through the remainder of the front nine.  A bogey on the 7th was followed by a birdie on the par five 8th hole, and he turned a three shot lead.  Tiarnan McLarnon was one of the early starters, he went around in 70 (-2) which would see him claim second place.  The back nine proved a challenge for most with all of the leaders bar O’Flaherty dropping shots.

Gallery: Lee Valley Senior Scratch 2018 R3(2)

The results told a story about the conditions, of the later starters O’Flaherty was the only golfer to match par.  Ian O’Rourke also shot a 72 while James Sugrue and Keith Crowley both signed for 73’s.  Given the quality of the chasing pack it was thought there would have been a low score, but it never happened and O’Flaherty became the first person to win back to back titles since Continue reading

O’Flaherty goes low to lead in Lee Valley

Lee Valley Senior Scratch Cup 2018, Lee Valley Golf Club.  Second Round, Saturday 21st April 2018Gary O’Flaherty had a super second round of 64 in Lee Valley this afternoon to claim the lead in the Senior Scratch Cup.  Nine birdies and a single bogey saw the Cork GC golfer post an 11 shot swing from his morning round.  His 75/64 has given him a two shot lead in the competition with the final 18 holes scheduled for tomorrow.  Ronan Mullarney (-3, 70/71) leads the chasers with Jack McDonnell and Sean Desmond on -2.  James Sugrue is 4th on -1, he’ll be looking for his second scratch cup win after success in Fota Island last week.

Gallery: Lee Valley Senior Scratch Cup 2018 (R2)

O’Flaherty went on a roll from the second hole this morning.  He birdied the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and the index one 5th hole thanks to a chip in.  He parred the 6th and the 7th which was playing into a very strong wind.  Another birdie followed on the par five 8th and he turned on 30 strokes after a sixth birdie on the 9th.

Another birdie followed on the 10th with two more following on the Continue reading

Ian Stafford Awarded Fellow Status by PGA

Ian Stafford_April 2018_1Popular golf teaching Professional Ian Stafford was recently awarded the Fellow designation by the PGA.  The Innishannon and Kinsale based pro has continued to invest in his continuing professional development and now becomes only the second PGA professional in Munster to hold the fellow status.  Ian’s latest qualification was approved by the APAL process (Accreditation of Professional Achievement and Learning).  Each application is considered by the APAL Council which consists of longstanding PGA Members, representatives of the R&A, the golf industry, an advisor from the university sector and two PGA Senior Staff members.  On the island of Ireland there are currently over 500 PGA Professionals only 12 of which currently have Fellow status, with Stafford being the youngest to reach Fellow level at 36.  This follows on Ian’s qualification as a Level 3 Advanced Coach which he achieved in 2016, and his motivation stems from one of the cornerstones of his teaching.  “As a coach I’m Continue reading

Christy’s Legacy in Lee Valley

AIG Pierce Purcell Shield, Lee Valley Golf Club, Wednesday 7th June 2017For most golfers in Cork, Jerry Keohane is the driving force behind Lee Valley.  But Jerry says he owes a lot to the original course designer.  “There was one man who inspired me to and I learned a huge amount from him in two and a half years.  He was the most amazing man I ever met, Christy O’Connor Jnr.”  In a time before google maps or 3D modelling, Christy was a traditionalist, walking the land to judge the layout as Jerry explained: “He just had a simple drawing, a layout of the course and nothing else.  He walked each fairway when he came down every week, sometimes twice a week.  I’d be watching him and you’d ask yourself what’s he’s doing.  He had some paint and he’d go around and mark out the greens and the bunkers and I was amazed by the man.  He had no drawings or detailed plans, his Continue reading

Lee Valley 25th Anniversary Launch

Lee Valley Golf Club 25th Anniversary Book Launch, Saturday 13th Jan 2018

Jim Long, Chairman Munster Golf pictured with Lord Mayor Tony Fitzgerald and Lee Valley Captain Brian O’Donovan. Picture: Niall O’Shea

Lee Valley commenced their 25th anniversary celebrations last weekend when the 2018 Officers drove in to mark the start of the new golfing year.  A special celebration also took place to launch a new book detailing the Lee Valley story which has been evolving over the past quarter of a century.  Lee Valley Captain led the festivities and he was delighted to detail what Lee Valley meant to him.  The Skibbereen native, who won an All Ireland Club title with O’Donovan Rossa the same year that the couse opened, has been a proud member in Lee Valley for over 15 years.  “What a tremendous golf course we have here.  Back in 1993 you could stand on the balcony and see as far down as the 14th fairway” said the Captain.  “Today you won’t see past the first fairway with the trees and how it has developed and matured.  It’s a hidden jewel and we’re delighted to have it.  It doesn’t just happen and it doesn’t come naturally, the work that has been done by Jerry, James Mulcahy and Continue reading