Browne leads the field home with superb round

Michael Browne took full advantage of an early start and dry round as he led the field home in Sunday’s latest round of the Winter Series sponsored by Tiernan’s Centra Blackrock.

The first 18 hole competition of the year produced some hot scoring on a day when those still on the course after midday had to contend with a constant downpour to the finish.

The winner had no such problems as he teed off bright and early at 7.30am and had returned an impressive gross score of 45pts long before the first drops of rain fell from the grey sky.

Browne, who plays off 22, was deducted one point for a previous Winter Series prize but his nett score of 44pts was good enough to take top prize from 17 handicapper Fergal McKenna who finished on 43pts after also receiving a one point deduction but managed to hold off Anthony O’Donoghue (13) on countback thanks to an impressive 24pts over the back nine.

Last year’s Captain’s Prize winner Brian Renaghan (5) came next on 42pts with Sean Quigley (18) taking fifth on 41pts as his back nine score of 23pts proved decisive on countback.

Browne got off to a flying start, picking up six points by parring the opening two holes and he then bogeyed the third to go to eight points. On the fourth he sent both his drive and second shot into the trees but knew this had to the potential to be his day when, on both occasions, the ball ricocheted back onto the fairway.

His six on the index one earned him another two points and by time he reached the turn he was on 22pts, thanks to a four point haul at the index three par five seventh which he parred.

Browne then collected a massive five points on the par five 10th when he holed his eight iron approach for an eagle three and gained another three points at the index two 11th which he bogeyed.

When he walked off the 14th hole he was on 38pts, having birdied the short par four for four points, and he managed to cover the final four holes in seven points for a highly impressive gross score of 45pts which nobody in the field managed to better.

Sunday, March 3 – Winter Series 18 Hole Singles Stableford sponsored by Tiernans Centra Blackrock: Michael Browne (22) 44pts*, Fergal McKenna (17) 43/24pts*, Anthony O’Donoghue (13) 43pts, Brian Renaghan (5) 42pts, Sean Quigley (18) 41/23pts. *Point deducted for previous win during Winter Series.