Peter O’Keeffe claimed his first win of the 2018 season when he successfully defended his Kerry Scratch Cup title in Tralee last weekend. It was the perfect weekend for O’Keeffe as he fine-tuned his game in preparation for the Irish Amateur Open which started today. O’Keeffe has been a big fan of the event in Tralee and having finished second in 2016, he won the event last year. The Douglas man held the overnight lead after 36 holes. He was tied with Monkstown’s Sean Desmond who Continue reading
Mark Healy finished in the top ten in Bray thanks to a great recovery that featured five birdies. The Kinsale man had a poor start with a bogey on the opening hole and another on the second hole. He steadied after that and pulled a shot back at the seventh. He had birdies the 10th and 11th to get back into the red and two more birdies followed on the 15th and at the final hole. Healy’s 67’s matched the best score of the day, winner Stefan Greenberg along with second placed Ronan Mullarney and third placed Jack McDonnell also went around the course in Bray on -3.
James Sugrue had a disappointing final round that saw him drop from third place to 12th. He signed for a four over par 74 which featured only a single bogey. Sean Desmond had a 72 to finish just inside the top 30 while Cathal Butler and Darren Hourihan ahd 77’s to finish in the middle of the pack, while Aoife Ni Thuama finished in 8th place in the Continue reading
Weather conditions in Lahinch were slightly better today as the opening two rounds of the matchplay got underway. After two rounds there are still five Cork golfers involved, with two all-Cork clashes set for tomorrow morning.
Kinsale’s Cathal Butler and John Murphy made it through to the third round. Murphy had a two hole win over his Munster team mate Andrew McCormack this afternoon while Butler won on the 18th against Robert Brazill from Naas. Butler will face Peter O’Keeffe in the third round, O’Keeffe had wins today over two Limerick members, Owen O’Brien and Sean Poucher to book his place on the last 16. Gary O’Flaherty will face James Sugrue in the final match tomorrow morning. O’Flaherty needed all 18 holes this morning to beat Keith Murphy while this afternoon he dispatched Stephen Loftus 5&4. Sugrue was the last player left on the course this evening and he wrapped up his match with Darragh Coghlan on the 17th. With eight Cork qualifiers the hopes were high that someone might follow in Mervyn Owens footsteps and claim the prestigious South title. After today there are still five with a chance. Gary Ward won this morning but fell to Colm Campbell in the second round match this afternoon. Two Cork qualifiers lost out in this morning’s first round. Sean Desmond was handed a tough draw when he was put up against Conor O’Rourke from Naas. The form book ruled and Continue reading
It isn’t too often that a scratch golfer would have six bogies and a double – and still be happy with his round. Well that’s exactly what happened Sean Desmond in Lahinch today. Playing is his first South of Ireland, the Monsktown teenager shot a 74 in very testing conditions. That 74 included four birdies and an eagle, which helped Desmond to bounce back from the bogies. He was actually one under after an eagle on the 5th and he finished the front nine on level par. That included a lost ball on the 7th which led to a double bogey. A birdie on the 12th saw Desmond back in the red but three consecutive bogies on 13, 14 and 15 saw him return to the black and sign for a two over par 74.
Desmond held the clubhouse lead for a few hours but was surpassed by Rowan Lester who came home in three under to record a level par 72. Desmond is currently tied for second alongside Robin Dawson. Gary O’Flaherty and Peter O’Keeffe are the next best of the Cork lads, they both shot a four over par 76. John Hickey is two Continue reading
Cathal Butler shot a course record 64 in Newlands today and catapulted himself into a share of the lead going into tomorrow’s final round of the Leinster Students Championship. Butler made the most of the benign conditions on day two, and he eagled the par five 2nd hole to set the tone. He added two more birdies on the front nine to go out in 31 strokes (-4). Three more birdies followed on the back nine and although he failed to birdie the short par five final hole, the Maynooth student did enough to claim a course record.
John Murphy was also in good form, shooting a 67 on day two. It was a bit more complicated for Murphy as three early birdies were cancelled out by three bogies on the front nine. Murphy hit the reset button and reeled off four consecutive birdies starting at the par three 12th. He couldn’t add to that on the 18th but the -4 return see’s him tied for the lead alongside Butler. Ben Murray (UCC) is the third man on -3, he shot a 68 to move from third place to tie the lead. Mallow’s James Sugrue is in 4th place two shots behind the leading trio, Sugrue was also in the 60’s with a two under par 69 to get to -1. Monkstown’s Sean Desmond also shot a 69 to get to back to +2 and a share of 9th place. Gary Ward had a 12 shot swing on day two, he had a 68 today after a disappointing 80 in yesterday’s testing conditions.
The man of the day was Butler though and after a few months of poor results the Kinsale golfer is back in the groove. “My swing felt really good today, it felt good yesterday as well only that it was very blustery” said the Kinsale man after the great round. “There were a lot of gusts and it was very tricky, and I didn’t get rewarded for the good shots. But today it was flat calm and it was pretty much target golf out there. I’ve did quite a lot of work on my swing with Paul Kiely in the past few months so it’s finally starting to come together.” And it wasn’t case of protecting a score as Butler kept on giving himself solid birdie chances. “I drove the ball really well today, and I’ve learned that when I’m playing well to put the boot down and keep going for birdies. I hit my only bad drive of the day on the 18th, I went into the trees but recovered and wedged on to eight feet. I hit the birdie putt around two feet past but overall I’m delighted with the round. There were great scores too from Gary [Ward] and John [Murphy] so hopefully there will be plenty more birdies for the Kinsale lads. I’m really looking forward to tomorrow, hopefully there will be more good weather and a few more birdies.”
Peter O’Keeffe was a late withdrawal this afternoon from the East of Ireland Championship which gets underway in Co Louth Golf Club tomorrow. O’Keeffe was one the highest ranked qualifiers but a neck injury has prevented him from taking part. He struggled with the problem last week during the Douglas Senior Scratch Cup and with no improvement he made the tough call to withdraw late this afternoon. Although the Irish Open champion is missing, there’s still a strong challenge from Cork.
Munster Students Champion John Murphy (Kinsale) returned from France earlier this week and he’ll be confident from a run of recent good form while fellow Kinsale member Cathal Butler will be looking to return to the form he displayed at the Munster Students in March. Both Sean Desmond (Monkstown) and Gary Ward Continue reading
Monkstown’s Sean Desmond made a successful return from injury today when he won the Douglas Senior Scratch Cup. Desmond suffered ankle ligament damage earlier this month and that kept him off the course for three weeks. Douglas was his first competitive outing and this morning he shot a solid level par 72. The first year UCC student was two shots off the lead after the first round when his Senior Cup partner Eoghan Long led the field with a 70. It was a packed leaderboard with over 20 golfers within four shots of the lead. Desmond started fast the second round and he was three under through 10 holes. He gave two shots back thought on the 12th and the 16th. A birdie on the 17th however proved to be the difference and he went on to win by one shot.
“It’s my first scratch cup win and absolutely delighted to get one, especially in a big competition like Douglas” said a happy Desmond who was equally happy with the way he played. “I played very solidly. I hit the ball well in general, and hit a lot of greens. I put myself in the right spots most of the time except for a few holes where I made some very sloppy bogeys. But overall I Continue reading
Monkstown’s Sean Desmond made it through to the matchplay stage on his debut in the West of Ireland Championship today. Desmond shot a second successive 73 at Co Sligo and finished inside the top twenty. Sean had a colourful card today, five bogies and a double were offset by five birdies on the testing links track. Tomorrow he has a 7.27am start where he’ll face Robert Brazill from Naas.
Desmond was the only Cork qualifier in a very narrow field that saw just three Cork golfers get into the tournament. James Sugrue finished 20 places outside the matchplay cut while Kinsale’s John Murphy had a tough debut with rounds of 79 and 77. Conor O’Rourke secured the Silver Medal as the best qualifier on -2, while just two others managed to break par. Three days of matchplay golf follow as all 64 qualifiers will have hopes of winning the season’s first major event.
John Murphy stormed to the top of the leaderboard on day 2 of the Munster Students Championship, thanks to an excellent 68. He’s now four shots clear of the field on 6 under par. 68 was a popular number in Cork Golf Club today, with both James McKeever and Cathal Butler posting 68’s. Butler will disappointed despite tying the low round of the day, he was seven under before carding a triple bogey on the 17th. The Kinsale man dusted himself off and recovered with a par on the 18th. Butler recorded six birdies and an eagle, with one bogey and the triple in the impressive round.
Murphy’s 68 was less dramatic four birdies and a bogey on the front nine saw him on -3 at the turn. He added a birdie on the 10th and shot par golf for the remaining eight holes. The four hole cushion gives him a big advantage going into the final round, but there are some quality golfers in the chasing pack. Monkstown’s Sean Desmond is tied for 5th on level par and James Sugrue is just inside the top Continue reading
John Murphy (Kinsale/MU) lies just one shot off the lead after day one in the Munster Students Championship at Cork Golf Club. The Munster Boys champion finished on two under after carding four birdies and two bogies. The lead is held by Stefan Greenberg (Tandragee) and David Foy (Laytown & Bettystown)on three under, while holder Jack McDonnell (Forrest Little/MU) is just one shot off the lead.
Sean Desmond (Monkstown/UCC) is in the top ten after signing for a one over par 73. Desmond won a Munster Senior Cup title with Monkstown in Cork last August and the course clearly suits him. The UCC student was four under through six holes but he dropped two shots before the turn.He had a mixed start to the back nine and a double bogey 15th meant that he signed for a 73. Kinsale’s Cathal Butler is one shot back and also in the top ten. He eagled the par five second Continue reading