James Sugrue (Mallow) teeing of in the third round of the South of Ireland.
Picture: Niall O’Shea
James Sugrue and Peter O’Keeffe lead a five strong Cork contingent on the Munster team for the interprovincial championship later this month. Cork GC duo John Hickey and Gary O’Flaherty along with Kinsale’s Cathal Butler make up the majority of the eight man team to play in Athenry.
Sugrue and O’Keeffe were assured of their places thanks to finishing in the top three on the Munster Order of Merit. Both have recorded wins this year and they have also been playing well, reaching the latter stages of the South of Ireland and the AIG Irish Close. Gary O’Flaherty retains his place and he’s be hoping to add to the six wins that he’s racked up since his first appearance in 1996. John Hickey and Cathal Butler return to the side after missing out last year, they both played in Fota Island in 2016.
Geoff Lenehan, Andrew McCormack and Eanna Griffin also retain their places from last year in what is a very experienced side. There are two notable absentees though Continue reading
Cork interest in the AIG Irish Close finished today as James Sugrue and Peter O’Keeffe lost in the third and fourth rounds respectively. Sugrue was up against Conor Purcell and the match went all the way to the 20th hole before it was settled. Unlike the result of extra holes in Lahinch, Sugrue came out on the wrong side when the match finished on the 2nd hole. Purcell went on to beat Eugene Smith this afternoon and will face Eoin Leonard in tomorrow’s semi-final.
Peter O’Keeffe had a good win this morning, beating Jack Walsh with two holes to spare. He faced Alex Gleeson in the quarter-final and unfortunately for O’Keeffe the 2016 winner from Castle won by a single hole. Gleeson will now face Robbie Cannon in the other semi-final.
Peter O’Keeffe in action in Lahinch at the South of Ireland. Picture: Niall O’Shea
Peter O’Keeffe and Jame Sugrue are through to the last 16 after a tough day at the AIG Irish Close Championship at the European Club. O’Keeffe, who had been struggling with illness yesterday, had a one hole win over Noel Crawford this morning, that was after being one down at the turn. In the afternoon he faced John Murphy in an all-Cork clash. Murphy wrapped up his first round match against Gary Cullen on the 12th signalling he was still the form player. It was O’Keeffe who started better, going two up after the first three holes. Murphy recovered quickly, levelling the match by the 6th, and he held a one shot lead at the turn. O’Keeffe had another purple patch on the back nine, he was one up through 15, and he won the 16th to double his lead. He won the match on the 17th, winning that hole to record a 3&1 win over Murphy. O’Keeffe will face Jack Walsh in tomorrow’s third round.
James Sugrue also Continue reading
It was a good weekend for Cork golfers as seven have made it through to the matchplay stage of the AIG Irish Close Championship. The European Club in Co Wicklow is the venue for the final major of the year and the challenging Ruddy designed links saw the scores vary from 66 to 90+ over the opening two days.
The leader from day one, Peter O’Keeffe (Douglas) finished in tied third place. Although he had a 76 today, his opening 66 from yesterday was always going to be enough to see him safely through to the matchplay phase. A few early bogies set the tone for his day and despite a recovery on his second nine, two late bogies meant he finished on +5 and level par for the 36 holes. Gary Ward (Kinsale) is just one shot behind in fifth place, tow rounds of 71 and 72 left the Kinsale golfer on +1.
Macroom’s Padraig O’Connor has reached the matchplay stage for the first time. He shot a one over par 72 today, and finished on +5 to take 16th place. John Hickey and Cathal Butler both made their second successive championship cut with solid play over the opening two days. Hickey carded rounds of 75 and 75 to finish in 33rd place and although he’ll be disappointed by the two late bogies, he’s safely through to Continue reading
Pictures from Saturday morning at Lahinch: Continue reading
The second round in Lahinch came to an abrupt halt today as heavy rain flooded the course causing the second strokeplay round to be abandoned. With the first round scores counting, the top 64 cut fell at +2 with not all on that score qualifying. Kinsale’s Eric Rumley was one of those to miss out, the countback from yesterday costing him a place in the matchplay.
The seven Cork qualifiers are James Sugrue (Mallow), Cathal Butler (Kinsale), Gary O’Flaherty (Cork), John Hickey (Cork), Peter O’Keeffe (Douglas), Sean Desmond (Monkstown), Gary Ward (Kinsale). With drier weather forecast for tomorrow the organisers will be hoping to complete the two planned rounds. The first round Continue reading
Peter O’Keeffe and James Sugrue are safely through to the matchplay stage of the North of Ireland, comfortably finishing in the top 64 from the mammoth field of 300 golfers. O’Keeffe carded rounds of 68 and 70 over both courses in Royal Portrush to finish on -5 and in a tie for 4th place. The Douglas man fired in eight birdies and an eagle over the two rounds and if he can continue in that form he should extend his time in Portrush. He’s currently in action against Haryey Byers from Walton Heath in the first matchplay round.
North of Ireland Matchplay Draw
James Sugrue continued his good form with a top 13 finish in the strokeplay qualifier. He shot rounds of 68 and 72 to book his place in the matchplay where he faces Marc Norton from Belvoir Park this morning. There was disappointment for Cathal Butler as he finished just one shot outside qualification on +3, and there was no joy for Continue reading
Cian McNamara and James Sugrue have a solid chance of making the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open after the opening round of the Rosapenna qualifier. McNamara shot a three under par round of 69 to lie in 4th place at the halfway stage. After a bogey on the 5th he came back in four under par, with a final birdie on the 17th to get himself back into contention. James Sugrue is two shots back on -1, and currently in 10th place. Sugrue had an interesting round, made up of seven birdies and six bodies. irrespective of what happens tomorrow both golfers will travel to the UK from Donegal to take part in final qualifying for the British Open.
Jack Howard is tied for 15th on +1, Davey Barry and Padraig Dooley are both tied for 25th place after rounds of 75 (+3). Given that the best scores today were -5 it’s unlikely that 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.
Eoghan Long claimed his first scratch cup win on Sunday when he won the 36 hole Douglas Senior Scratch Cup. The Monkstown man posted the best score of the afternoon when he signed for a two under par 70. Added to his level par 72 from the morning, his total of 142 for the 36 holes was enough to win the title by one shot. Long had two challengers, both Peter O’Keeffe and Eric Rumley had shot 70’s in the first round, but they both finished with 73’s in the afternoon.
Play in Douglas was delayed on Sunday morning due to heavy rain. Although the overnight downpour had stopped the course staff needed some time to clear some standing water. Although the threat of rain was never too far away the course dried out and some good golf was on display. O’Keeffe and Rumley were the only golfers to break par. Long along with Stephen O’Neill and Darren Continue reading