Barry wins the Arkew Cup

Richard Barry won the Arkew Cup on Sunday . The 11 handicapper was the only player in the 180 strong field to break 70 on a day when the course clearly showed just how tough it has become following the recent improvements.

Barry’s nett 69 included birdies at the fifth, 10th and 12th which balanced out double bogeys at the sixth, seventh and 14th. His round also included seven pars and five bogeys.

Neal MacKell took second overall on countback with a nett 70 after the four handicapper shot a 74, which was the best gross round of the day. That allowed Dillon Greene (6) to take the Gross Prize with a 76 while Ciaran Johnston (10), Paschal Keenan (15) and Colm Coburn (21) took the category prizes.

Tom Dunne (15), who had a hole in one on the fifth on Wednesday and lost a shot, won the Juvenile Prize.

Sunday, July 16 – Arkew Cup Singles Stroke – Overall: Richard Barry (11) 69, Neal MacKell (4)* 70/33/18.66. Gross: Dillon Greene (6) 76. Category 1 (0-11): Ciaran Johnston (10) 71, David Staunton (9) 72/33.5. Category 2 (12-16): Paschal Keenan (15) 71/34.5, Kenneth Cairns (14) 71. Category 3 (17+) Colm Coburn  (21) 72/36.5, Ray Pepper  (19) 72. Juvenile: Tom Dunne (15) 76. * Best Gross: Neal MacKell 74. CSS: 73.

New course record and Club Championship for Grant

Aaron Grant

Aaron Grant set a new course record on his way to winning the Club Championship on Saturday.

The plus one handicapper shot a bogey free eight under par 64 in the first round of the 36 hole event and a level par second round saw him finish on eight under and five shots ahead of Caolan Rafferty.

Grant ‘s new course record included back to back birdies at the second and third and he also birdied the par five sixth and seventh to turn in 32. Birdies followed at 10 and 11 before he recorded his only five of the day when he parred the 12th. Another birdie at the 15th took him to seven under and he finished his record breaking round with his eighth birdie at the last.

Rafferty, who teed it up after spending five days at the North of Ireland Championship, shot a two-under par 70 in the opening round to lie six shots behind Grant and conditions got tougher for the afternoon ‘s second round as a strong south westerly wind swept across the course,.

That suited Grant and he posted a level par 72 to set a target of eight under for the chasers. Grant’s second round included four birdies, two bogeys and a double bogey. Rafferty was only able to reduce the deficit by one shot after a one under par 71 but it was good enough to claim runners-up spot.

Grant and Rafferty will now turn their attentions to this week’s Barton Shield Leinster Finals in Kilkenny as the club bids for its first provincial pennant in this inter-club competition for elite golfers. Eoin Murphy, Josh Mackin and Richie Newell are the other players who have featured on the journey to this stage and managers Alan McCabe and John Conlon were interested spectators as Saturday’s Club Championship unfolded.  Dundalk will face Portmanrock in Friday’s quarter-final with the semi-final scheduled for the afternoon and the final taking place on Saturday.

Saturday, July 15 – Club Championship: 136 – Aaron Grant (+1) (64,72). 141 – Caolan Rafferty  (+4) (70,71). Best Nett: 139 – Conall Murdock (9) (70,69). CSS Round 1: 73,
CSS Round 2: 74.

Ladies reach East Leinster semi-finals in Junior Foursomes

Dundalk have reached the semi-finals of the East Leinster AIG Junior Foursomes for the first time and will face Malahide at Powerscourt on Wednesday, August 2, for a place in the regional final.

Under the management of Briege Renaghan and Violet McGeady, the team have come through four tough rounds to reach the last four. The Junior Foursomes is for players with a handicap between 15 and 36 but the pairings must have a minimum joint handicap of 35 and a maximum of 41.

Each tie consists of of three foursomes matches which is played a neutral venue and Dundalk’s campaign began on April 23 in Royal Tara where they had 3-0 win over Virginia.

On May 13 the team travelled to Mannan Castle and beat Donabate 2-1 before defeating Headfort on a similar scoreline at Balbriggan on June 10.

That set up a quarter-final in Naas against Royal Tara where they once again emerged 2-1 winners to book a first ever semi-final place. However, the final pairing of Niamh Maguire and Brid Rocks were taken to sudden death before they finally saw off their opponents on the 20th hole.

The other pairings in the win over Royal Tara were Mary Lou Grennan and Elizabeth McGuinness, and Theresa Connolly and Bernie MacGuinness. Fionnuala Dullaghan and Olive Jones were the substitutes while Anne Murray and Mags Coburn are currently unavailable die to injury,

“All the squad are playing well at the moment and we are really looking forward to the semi-final in Powerscourt. The matches all through the competition have been nail-biters but I am hoping that will stand to us against Malahide,” said Briege Renaghan.

 

 

Club Chamionship 2017

36 Holes One-Day Event

Club Champion: Aaron Grant  +1     136  [64,72]

Runner Up :Caolan Rafferty  +4     141  [70,71]

Best Net :Conall Murdock 9         139  [70,69]
CSS Round 1 (73)
CSS Round 2 (74)
33 Entrants   12 Twos 12 players

Course Record Aaron Grant 64 First Round

Boys team reaches Fred Day Leinster Final

Dundalk are through to the Leinster Final of the Fred Daly Trophy after an superb win over a Carton House team that contained newly crowned Ulster Boys Champion Jack Doherty.

The Fred Daly Trophy is the premier inter-cub boys tournament in the country and involves five singles matches with the home team staging three and the away team hosting two.

Drawn away, Dundalk despatched Eoin Murphy, Josh Mackin and Padraig Fallon to the Kildare venue while Sean Laverty and Kyle Rafferty were handed responsibility for the home leg.

Laverty was always in control on his way to a 3&2 victory while Rafferty found himself two down after eight but was level after 12 and eventually won on 19th after somehow scrambling a par from the trees on the 18th to force the match to sudden death.

At Carton House defeats for Murphy and Fallon meant the outcome rested on result of Josh Macken’s match and, one down playing the last, the Irish Boys international showed his steel as he eagled the par five 18th after hitting a two iron 215 yards to 20 feet and sinking a tricky downhill breaking putt.

Another great approach shot at the 19th to six feet left Macken with two putts for victory and he duly sealed Dundalk’s place in the final where they will face Greystones at Portmarnock Links on Friday, July 28.

Dundalk began their campaign with a 4-1 win over Laytown & Bettystown before defeating Donabate 3.5 to 1.5 in the Second Round. A narrow 3-2 win over Ardee followed before a 3.5 to 1.5 win over The Island in the quarter-finals.

 

Another great week for Rafferty at North of Ireland Championship

Caolan Rafferty

Caolan Rafferty’s super season continued last week in the North of Ireland Championship at Royal Portrush.

He won the silver medal for leading qualifier and then battled through four rounds of matchplay before losing in the semi-final to Irish international Colin Fairweather from Knock Golf Club.

The 24-year-old carded a bogey free, course record 65, on the newly redesigned Dunluce Links to lead home a field of 300, of whom 120 were plus handicappers, in the qualifying round.

He had posted a 68 in the first round over The Valley course and finished on 10 under par. Rafferty’s record round included birdies at the second and ninth and then he started his back nine with three birdies in a row before birding 15 and 17 and signing for a 65.

It was a second course record for Rafferty in less than a month as he also set a new low score at The Prince’s in England on his way to taking the silver medal for leading qualifier at the British Amateur.

That earned him promotion to the Irish international squad and his current run of form leaves him very much in the frame for a call-up for the upcoming Home Internationals.

Rafferty reached the semi-finals of the North back in 2015 and his march to the penultimate stage this year began with a 3&2 victory over Stackstown’s John McCarthy before a convincing win over Dungannon’s Dwayne Mallon in the second round.

Rafferty got a scare in the last 16 when he was taken to the 19th by Tandragee’s Ross Dutton before finally squeezing through. He bounced back from that in the quarter-final against Portmarnock’s Darragh Coghlan with a 4&2 victory.

That earned him a place in Friday morning’s semi-final against Knock’s Colin Fairweather and, cheered on by a sizeable contingent of supporters from Dundalk, he recovered back from an early setback to lead at the turn.

However, a bad bounce on the 12th, where he had played a glorious approach shot, saw momentum shift in favour of the Ulster golfer but Rafferty hung in and got back to level after 16.

He had an opportunity on 17 to go ahead but his biride putt shaved the hole and Fairweather then played a superb approach at the 18th to four feet to win and advance to the final where he lost to Hermitage’s Rowan Lester.

Rafferty next mission is to help Dundalk in this week’s Barton Shield Leinster Finals at Kilkenny before he heads to Lahinch and the South of Ireland Championship.

 

Rafferty leads Leinster to three-in-a-row

Caolan Rafferty was one of the stars as Leinster claimed their third Interprovincial title in a row this week at Carlow Golf Club.

Rafferty, who was part of last year’s successful team, had an impressive haul of 5.5pts from his six foursomes and singles matches over the three days.

In the opening match against Munster, Rafferty and foursomes partner Eugene Smith from Ardee defeated John Murphy and James Sugure 4&4 before Rafferty was sent out at No.1 in the singles and defeated newly crowned Irish Amateur Open champion Peter O’Keefe 2&1. Those wins helped Leinster to a 6.5 to 4.5 victory.

Leinster had a much more emphatic victory on Day Two when they beat Connacht by 8.5 to 2.5. In the morning foursomes Rafferty and Smith halved with Devin Morley and Jack McDonnell while the afternoon Rafferty beat Barry Anderson 5&3 in the top match.

That left Leinster needing just a draw from their final match against Ulster to retain their title and they got off to the best possible start by winning the foursomes 3-1 with Rafferty and Smith winning 2&1 against Jordan Hood and Kyle McCarron.

Team Captain, Seamus McParland from Greenore, again put his faith in Rafferty to lead Leinster our in the singles and for the third day in a row he delivered from the No.1 slot with a one hole win over Irish international Tiarnan McLarnon.

Leinster eventually won 7-4 to complete a 100 per cent record over the week and win three interprovincial titles on the trot for the first time in over 50 years and sights are now set on emulating that team from the 1960s which won four-in-a-row from 1962 to 1965.

 

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Teenager Curtin claims Intermediate Scratch Cup

Dundalk’s juvenile programme is producing a steady stream of talented teenagers at the moment and the latest player to announce his potential for future is 14-year-old Declan Curtin who won the Intermediate Scratch Cup on Sunday.

Curtin, who plays off 13, beat a field of 84 on a day when the Competition Standard Scratch was 73, one more than Standard Scratch for the white course.

Curtin shot a gross score of 80 to win by two shots from Brian McDonnell (13) with John Stanley (11) from City West a shot further back having edged out Billy Curran (12) for third place on countback.

Two bogies and two double bogies over the first four holes left Curtin with a lot of work to do but the teenager showed great composure over the remaining 14 holes to produce his winning score.

A par at the par three fifth was followed by a birdie at the par five sixth  and further pars followed at the eighth and ninth as he turned in 42.

Four successive pars from the 11th to the 14th brought him into contention and a par on the short 17th left him needing a par at the last for overall victory.

He left himself with work to do when his approach found a greenside bunker but he showed nerves of steel as he holed from the sand for a closing birdie and a two shot victory.

The competition was sponsored by Martin Lambe Plant Hire and our photo shows winner Declan Curtin (centre) with sponsor Martin Lambe (left) and Vice-Captain Gerry Byrne (right).

Sunday, July 2 – Intermediate Scratch Cup – 80 – Declan Curtin (13). 82 – Brian McDonnell (13). 83 – John Stanley (11, City West) 83/39; Billy Curran (12). 84 – Kevin Smith (11, Ardee) 84/37 (Ardee). Best Nett: Kieran Reidy (15) 69/32. CSS: 73.

Twelve-year-old Caffrey wins Minor Scratch Cup

Twelve-year-old Ben Caffrey from Ardee, where former Dundalk assistant professional Brian Kerley is now head pro, served notice that he is one to watch for the future as he won the Minor Scratch Cup on Sunday by two shots.

He shot an excellent score of 84 in this scratch competition for players of 17 handicap and higher but he had a shaky start with a double bogey six at the opening hole.

However, a par at the third and a birdie two at the fifth got him going and he parred the sixth and ninth to turn in 41 and well on course to challenge for honours.

His back nine was steady as he threw in back to back pars at the 13th and 14th but a double bogey five at the par three 17th threatened to wreck his round. However, he didn’t let it faze him and parred the last for an inward 43 and a final score of 84.

That was good enough for a two shot victory with Colm Garvey (22) taking second on 86, one shot ahead of fellow Dundalk clubman Declan Ward (20)
with Seamus Kelly (18) taking fourth on 88.

Our photo shows 2017 Minor Scratch Cup winner, Ben Caffrey (centre), with sponsor Martin Lambe (centre) of Martin Lambe Plant Hire and Vice Captain Gerry Byrne.

Sunday, July 2 – Minor Scratch Cup – 84 – Ben Caffrey (17, Ardee). 86 – Colm Garvey (22). 87 – Declan Ward (20). 88 – Seamus Kelly (18). Best Nett: James Reilly (26) 66. CSS: 73.

Giff wins PGA Tankard

Trevor Giff (12) won the PGA Tankard on Sunday won countback from John McLaughlin (25) after both had shot excellent scored of 41pts.

Three pars in the first three holes yield nine points for Gill and although he dropped shots on the sixth and eighth a birdie two on the par three ninth earned home another three points and a front nine total of 20pts,.

A dropped shot on the 10th was followed by an excellent par on the index two 11th and after bogeying the 12th for two points Giff reeled of three successive three point holes as he parred 13 and 15 and birdied 14. His final three point hole was the 18th which came after he dropped a shot at the 17th but the one point earned there proved vital as his 21pts haul on the back nine was enough to edge out McLaughlin.

Frank Byrne (8) took Category 1 with 40pts while Gerry McDermott (17) was the Category 2 winner thanks to a superb back nine score of 23pts which was enough to edge out Michael Hamailton (15) after both finished on 39pts. Michael Greene (19) also needed his back nine score of 21pts to see off vice captain Gerry Byrne after both finished on 38pts.

After picking up just two points from his opening three holes, Eddie Rogers (3) rallied in superb fashion over the remaining 15 holes and claimed the Gross Prize with a score of 32pts.

Seventeen-year-old Eoin Murphy’s became the latest Dundalk player to reach scratch this week and he did it in some style by winning the Overall and Gross Prizes in Wednesday’s Open Singles Stableford. Playing off one he shot a gross round of 40pts and a net round of 41pts and not even a blank at the 15th could halt his march to scratch. Conor McGleenon (11) from The Island took Category 1 while David Cairns (16) won Category 2 and Tom Geray (21) claimed Category 3. The juvenile prize went to Timmy Connolly (24)

 

Sunday, June 25 – PGA Tankard Singles Stableford – Overall: Trevor Giff (12) 41/21pts, John McLaughlin (25) 41pts. Category 1 (0-12): Frank Byrne (8) 40pts, Eddie Rocks (11) 38/19pts. Category 2 (13-17): Gerry McDermott (17) 39/23pts, Michael Hamilton (15) 39pts. Category 3 (18-28): Michael Greene (19) 38/21/14/6/4pts, Gerry Byrne (18) 38pts. Gross: Eddie Rogers (3) 32pts. CSS: 72 (36pts).

Wednesday, June 21 – Open Singles Stableford – Eoin Murphy (1) 41pts. Category 1 (0 to15): Conor McGleenon (11, The Island) 40pts. Sean Laverty (4) 39/21pts. Category 2 (16-20): David Cairns (18) 40pts, Peter O’Brien (16) 37pts. Category 3  (21-28): Tom Geary (21) 38pts, Michael Curran (21) 37pts. Gross: Eoin Murphy (1) 40pts. Juvenile: Timmy Connolly (24) 37/21pts. CSS: 72 (36pts).