O’Hare pips Walshe to take Lady Captain’s Prize to Men

Paul O’Hare was the winner of Lady Captain Criona O’Reilly’s Prize to Men on Sunday when he shot 69 for the only sub-70 round of the day.

He pipped last year’s Golfer of the Year Clem Walshe (5) by one shot on a day when the course off the blue tees proved long and difficult for most of the 197 players who took part.

The 28 handicapper took full advantage of the holes where he had two shots particularly the first, seventh, eighth, 11th and 18th where he had nett birdies while parring three of the four par three holes was another major factor in his victory. O’Hare went out in 32 nett and returned in 37 nett for his three part total of 69.

Aaron Grant (+1) shot a level par 72 to claim the Gross Prize while Brian Ward (17) shot a nett 72 to take the Veterans Prize and Cillian Halpenny (19) was the Best Juvenile after returning a 76. Conor Murphy (9), Bobby McCarthy (13) and George Rogers (19) won the Category Prizes.

Sunday, June 16 – Lady Captain’s Prize to the Men (Stroke) – Overall: Paul O’Hare (28) 69, Clem Walshe (5) 70. Gross: Aaron Grant (+1) 72. Veterans: Brian Ward (17) 72. Category 1 (0 -11): Conor Murphy (9) 71/ 35.5, Conall Murdock (5) 71. Category 2 (12-17): Bobby McCarthy (13) 74/35.5, Nicholas McShane (13) 74. Category 3 (18+): George Rogers (19) 73, Brendan Tinnelly (20) 76/37.5. Best Juvenile: Cillian Halpenny (19) 76/35.5. CSS: 74.

Senior panel reach Barton Shield semi-final

Dundalk Golf Club are through to the Leinster semi-finals of the Barton Shield after beating Carton House in the last eight at Seapoint on Saturday.

Last year Dundalk won the Leinster title to claim the club’s first ever senior pennant but lost out on the national crown when they were beaten by Athenry in the All-Ireland Final.

Caolan Rafferty took time out from his preparations for this week’s R&A Amateur Championship in Portmarnock to make himself available for the tie and he partnered Eoin Murphy in what turned out be a very close encounter.

The Dundalk pairing took a one hole lead twice after the third and 10th holes but were pulled back on both occasions to all square by Carton House birdies at the sixth and 11th.

Carton House finally got their noses in front on 14 when the Dundalk pairing recorded their only bogey of the day but they bounced back immediately with a birdie at the next hole, the par three 15th, to get back to all-square and it stayed that way until they were called in.

In the other match Aaron Grant and Josh Mackin were always in control having taken the lead with a birdie on the second hole. They stretched that lead to three holes by winning the fourth and fifth holes with pars before Mackin drained a 20 foot on the par five sixth for eagle and a four hole lead.

A bogey at the par five eighth saw them lose a hole but they won the ninth with another birdie to turn with a four hole lead which then stretched to five with a win on the 11th. Carton House did win 12 and 14 to pull the Dundalk lead back to three but a win on 16 restored the four hole advantage with two to play.

Dundalk will now face the winners of the quarter-final between Corrstown and Woodbrook on Saturday, July 27 at 7.30am in Royal Tara with the final due to take place at 1pm the same day. ENDS

Rafferty third in St Andrews Links Trophy

Caolan Rafferty finished third in the St Andrews Links Trophy in Scotland at the weekend. He shot rounds of 69, 65, 71 and 66 to finish on 17 under, three shots behind the winners, Jake Burnage of England.

Murdock retains House Committee Cup

Derek Murdock retained the House Committee Cup on Sunday when he shot a six under par 66 to win by three clear shots from Conor McCaughey on a day when only three players managed to break 70.

The 12 handicapper got off to the perfect start with three successive pars and although he bogeyed the next four holes he parred eight and then had a birdie two at the ninth where the tee had been brought forward to encourage attacking play off the tee.

That gave him a nett score of 33 for the front nine and three successive fives then followed before he parred 13 and 14 and bogeyed 15. He had back to back pars at the next two holes before finishing with a five at the last for a nett score of 33 on the back nine and an excellent score of 66.

McCaughey (5) took second overall on countback after both himself and Paul O’Callaghan (11) had come home in 69. O’Callaghan took Category 1 with Gareth Halpin (14) and Men’s Captain Pat Davis taking the other two category prizes. Conor Curran (1) with a 74 won the gross prize while Iarlaith Carroll (13) was the juvenile winner.

Sunday, June 9 – House Committee Cup (Stroke) – Overall: Derek Murdock (12) 66, Conor McCaughey (5) 69/35.5/20.3. Gross Prize: Conor Curran (1) 74. Category 1 (0-11): Paul O’Callaghan (11) 69, Ciaran Sheridan (5) 70. Category 2 (12-17): Gareth Halpin (14) 70, Andrew Brodigan (12) 71. Category 3 (18+): Pat Davis (18) 72, Michael Byrne (20) 73. Juvenile Prize: Iarlaith Carroll (13) 75. CSS: 73 Saturday, June 8 – Singles Stableford – 1st: Alan McDermott, 2nd: Paul Coburn, 3rd: Damian English. CSS:71/37. Wednesday, June 5 – Open Singles Stableford – Overall: Fergal Sexton (9) 42pts, Ciaran Daly (14) 39/21pts, Eamon Hoey (17) 39pts. Best Gross: Conor Curran (1) 37pts. Juvenile: Daniel Nordon (15) 38pts. CSS 72/36pts. Monday, June 3 – Open Stableford Singles – Overall: Zak Alderdice (7) 39pts, Anthony McCrave (21) 38pts, Nicholas McShane (14) 26pts. Best Gross: Aaron Grant 34pts. Best Juvenile: Iarlaith Carroll (15) 41pts. CSS: 35pts. ENDS

Knockout win tees Lawlor up for Challenge Tour date

Dundalk Golf Club’s Brendan Lawlor is set to tee it up with pros after winning an invite to the 2019 KPMG Trophy, a European Challenge Tour event which will be played in Belgium from August 29 to September 1.

The final day of the recent Belgian Knockout tournament on the European Tour featured the G-GOLF Knockout which was a nine-hole stroke play knockout match between two golfers with disability. Lawlor, the current World Number Three in the World Rankings for Golfers with Disability (WR4GD), defeated home favourite and WR4GD Number Five Adem Wahbi by three shots at Rinkven International Golf Course to earn his invite to the Challenge Tour event.

“It’s a fantastic accomplishment, we’re both winners today but I’m getting the prize, it’s really good,” said Lawlor after his victory. “Disability golf is getting more and more seen now all over the world and the European Tour have joined with EDGA, so we’re getting more chances like this to put on a wee show for the fans.

“It’s mind-blowing to get the invite. It’s my first outing in my first professional event. For a disability golfer to play, I think it’s the first time it’s ever happened, so it will be huge step forward for golf, not only for myself but for disability golf, to show other people what I’m capable of,” said Lawlor.

Lawlor also played with the pros in the pro-am on the eve of last month’s Betfred British Masters where the European Tour announced two tournaments for Golfers with Disability. The 36-hole EDGA Scottish Open and the 36-hole EDGA Dubai Finale will be played over the weekends of two of this season’s biggest Rolex Series events, the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open at The Renaissance Club and the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai at Jumeirah Golf Estates.

Scoring for both tournaments will feature on the European Tour’s website and App for fans to follow, while television coverage of both contests will form part of the world feed broadcast, and the winner in Scotland will also take part in the main prize-giving ceremony on Sunday afternoon.

Coburn goes low to win Irwin Lockington Salver

Eighteen handicapper Colm Coburn shot one of the best rounds in recent times around Dundalk when he returned a nine under par 63 on Sunday to win the Irwin Lockington Salver by five shots.

Two birdie twos at the par three ninth and 17th were key to his low round as he came home with an impressive gross score of 81.

He went out in 32 nett thanks to that birde at the ninth and pars at the second, seventh and eighth with his only blemish being a double bogey five at the par three fifth.

The strong wind certainly didn’t deter Coburn and on the back nine he parred the 10th and 13th before birdieing the 17th and parring the final hole as he came home in 31 nett.

Noel Crowe (24) with a net 68 led the chasing pack while Fergal Harte (6) with a 76 had the day’s best gross score and James Reilly (17) with a 73 won the Juvenile Prize. The Category prizes went to Fergal Sexton (9), Dermot McKenna (17) and John Oakes (26)

Sunday, June 2 – Irwin Lockington Salver – Overall: Colm Coburn (18) 63, Noel Crowe (24) 68. Gross: Fergal Harte (6) 76. Category 1 (0-11): Fergal Sexton (9) 69, Jim Caraher (8) 71. Category 2 (12-17): Dermot McKenna (17) 74/36.5, Gerard O’Keeffe (13) 74. Category 3 (18+): John Oakes (26) 72/35, George Rogers (20) 72. Best Juvenile: James Reilly (17) 73. CSS: 73.

Barton Cup team lose to Royal Tara in close encounter

The Barton Cup team bowed out of this year’s competition when they lost their third round tie against Royal Tara by 3.5 to 1.5.

Neil MacKell and Conor Hackett were the only Dundalk winners on the day as they clicked from the off by birdieing the first to go one up and sealed victory with wins on 13, 14 and 15.

Aidan Thornton and Billy Cairns lost 2& 1 in a tight match that turned when the Dundalk pairing lost 14 and 15, won 16 and then lost 17 to lose the match. 2&1.

Mark Gorham and Trevor Giff won the first two holes to go two up in their match but wayward shots that ended up out of bounds allowed Royal Tara to peg them back and the pairings were all square through 13. The Meathmen then won 14, despite almost going out of bounds twice, when they got up and down from the back of the green for birdie. They then birdied 15 and sealed a 3&2 win when taking 16 with a par.

Neil Mullooly and Mickey Coburn were also hauled back after going two up after eight holes. Royal Tara won the next three holes to go one up after 11 and held that lead until the 17th when Dundalk made it all square with one to play. However the Meath side holed their par putt on the last to claim the all-important third point in the overall match.

The remaining match was another close encounter as Conor Curran and Bobby McCarthy were all square with five to play. A wayward tee shot on 15 and a lost ball on 16 saw them go two down with two to play when the match was called in and declared a half as Royal Tara had collected the three points needed to advance to Round Four and a meeting with The Island.

Disappointing finish for Murphy at Irish Amateur

Eoin Murphy had a disappointing end to the Irish Amateur Open Championship at Rosses Point after putting himself in the running for a top ten finish in his first appearance in the event.

Rounds of 71, 68 and 72 saw him climb steadily through the field and start the final round in joint tenth place and just four shots off second place on two under.

But after bouncing back from a bogey five at the second with a birdie four at the third, the wheels started to come off for the 18 year old as he bogeyed the fourth and sixth to turn two over the day and level par for the tournament.

Down the back nine he dropped seven shots as he doubled bogeyed three holes and bogeyed another to finish tied 37th. However, Murphy will take a lot of positives from the week as he returns to inter-club action this weekend when the club’s senior panel begin their defence of the Leinster Barton Shield pennant they won for the first time in the club’s history last year.

Dundalk are among 13 clubs who will tee it up at Killeen Castle on Saturday in the regional qualifier with the top four qualifiers from the strokeplay round going forward to the matchplay semi-finals at 8.30am on Sunday morning. Only the winner of Sunday afternoon’s final will advance to the Leinster Finals on July 27 in Royal Tara.

Our Barton Cup team face Royal Tara in the third round of this year’s competition while our Irish Senior Mixed Foursomes team had a great 4-1 win over Greenore on Sunday to continue their run.

Caolan Rafferty, who missed the Irish Amateur Open because he is currently doing exams, has risen to an all-time high of 33rd on the World Amateur Golf Rankings.