Although the competitive golf season is well and truly over, James Sugrue was back in the news last week when he picked up an award. He was one of two recipients for golf at Mayor Patrick Gerard Murphy’s Co Council reception last week. Although Sugrue didn’t hit the high of a championship win, he continued to progress with two local wins and some great individual performances during the year. The season was book-ended by his two wins, the first in the Fota Island Senior Scratch Cup in early April, and the second in September when he won the John Whyte Fermoy Senior Scratch Cup to close out the season. The two wins may be highlights, but to be fair the Mallow golfer has had a very impressive summer of golf which was recognised with his selection to the Irish team. Sugrue joined the Irish Mens panel this year and represented the Irish selection at the South African and Spanish Amateurs in the early season, and in October he travelled to South America for two international events. His full cap finally came when he was selected to play for the Home Internationals which took place last week. Capped on multiple occasions in Boy’s golf, this was a big step up for Sugrue but one he took in his stride.
The easy going 20 year old went on to win four matches as Ireland finished as runners-up in the four team tournament. “There was actually no real difference, I didn’t feel as if I was under any extra pressure. I know all the lads and I know Neil Manchip for a long time as well” said James. “I was really happy with the way I played down the stretch in a few matches. In the opening foursomes we were two up with three to play and I hit an approach to around six inches to close out the match. On the second day I had a four iron on a par three into the wind, and I managed to get it to inside a foot to close out that match.” You can feel the confidence in Sugrue as he tells that story. Continue reading
Pictures from the prize-giving in Lahinch: Continue reading
Pictures from the third round in Lee Valley: Continue reading
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
James Sugrue pictured with Michael P Murphy after his win this afternoon.
Munster’s fate is very much on their own hands tomorrow as they have a chance to win the Inter Provincial title in Athenry. After a narrow loss to Ulster yesterday, the Munster team bounced back today with a strong win over Connacht. Munster lead 2.5-1.5 after the Foursomes this morning, but they had a strong return in the singles, winning six of the seven matches.
James Sugrue, Eanna Griffin, Peter O’Keeffe and Andrew McCormack all won down 18 in what was a closely fought contest overall. John Hickey enjoyed a clear-cut 4&3 win against Joe Lyons and Garry O’Flaherty held sway in the back match, beating home favourite David Kitt 3&2.
As Leinster beat Ulster it means that all four teams have one win and one loss going into the final day. With the four team tied, the advantage is with Munster who have the highest number of match wins, they have a 1.5 match lead over Connacht. If Munster win the chances are they will win the title after a four year gap.
Munster v Leinster, 08:40 Foursomes
A McCormack & C Butler v C Rafferty & E Smith; J Sugrue & E Griffin v J Yates & R Brazill; G Lenehan & P O’Keeffe v A Fahey & C Denvir; G O’Flaherty & J Hickey v R Cannon & R Moran Continue reading
Pictures from Limerick Golf Club: Continue reading
Mel Deasy (Bantry Bay) bagged his second Munster title when he won the Munster Boys Under 16 Open at Newcastlewest today. The Munster Under 15 champion from two weeks ago, Mel was up against a tough field for the Under 16 Open. Deasy started the second round in a four-way tie for the lead, and a rain delay meant he started his final round an hour later than scheduled. A hard south westerly wind tested everyone and Deasy parred the opening hole which proved problematic for many golfers. A solid front nine followed with birdies on the 4th and 8th holes. That gave the Ballincollig man a two shot lead over the field as he faced into the final nine holes. The back nine proved testing, with Deasy dropping shots on the 12th and 15th. After his playing partner Joshua McCabe fired in two birdies leaving the Bantry golfer two behind. McCabe found trouble coming home however dropping four shots over the 16th and 17th. That gave Deasy back his two shot lead, and he played the 18th like a pro. He found the fairway off the tee and played a steady approach that finished just short of the green on the long par four. A chip and two putts later he was the Munster Boys Under 16 Champion. His one over par second round meant that he finished on a level par total of 140 for this two rounds.
Gallery: Munster Boys U16 Open 2018, Newcastlewest GC
Joshua McCabe (Roganstown) was second, one shot behind Deasy, and third place went to Robert Galligan (Elm Park). Kinsale’s Robbie Walsh had a disappointing second round of 81, dropping outside the top ten. Muskerry’s Stephen Riordan jumped ten places following his second round but Jack Murphy and Brian McCarthy both dropped places in the testing conditions. They were the only Cork golfers to make the cut for the second day.
For Deasy it was a great finish to the week. On Tuesday he was on the Bantry Bay Junior Foursomes team who lost out in the Munster semi-final. Mel is now a double Munster winner, holding the U15 and U16 titles.
Munster Boys Under 16 Open Championship, Full Results
Pictures from day two at Newcastlewest: Continue reading
Gary O’Flaherty who makes his 20th appearance for Munster at the Interprovincial Championships. Picture: Niall O’Shea
It’s 22 years since Gary O’Flaherty made his Munster debut, as a 17 year old he was thrown into a cauldron dominated by career long elite amateurs. And O’Flaherty survived. Now making his 20th appearance on the Munster team, Gary is looking for his sixth win in Blue. Back in 1996 he pitched up at Mount Juliet for his first outing as Munster tried to retain their title. Munster did just that, and went to Ballybunion a year later to help Munster win the three in a row. It was a big event for O’Flaherty, there was no under 16 or under 18 interpro’s back then and he was teeing it up with the elite amateurs from across the country. “I was in awe of the guys there that week” said Gary when recalling that week. “I played two singles matches and won both against Colin McElderry and Kevin Flanagan. I remember watching Eddie Power and Dennis O’Sullivan play, and I tried to copy their games. Not the longest hitters, but very straight and did very little wrong. I played foursomes the following year in Ballybunion with Tom Cleary and we won 5.5 out of 6 points.” O’Flaherty had two caps to his name, along with two wins. As the years went on, there was not matching the two from two success rate and it would be Continue reading
Pictures from the semi-finals and final at Nenagh: Continue reading