Kearney gets boost ahead of PGA Irish Region event
THE PGA Irish Region Championship has produced many photo finishes down the years, so stand by for more of the same when the 102nd instalment is staged at Mount Juliet starting on Thursday.
Among the thrilling finishes was David Mortimer’s 30-foot eagle putt on the 72nd green, at Seapoint two years ago, to pip tour player Damien McGrane by one stroke.
There was also an exciting finish at The Island in 1999 when Neil Manchip, now the GUI national coach, beat Darren Clarke in the run-in and, at Belvoir Park in 1995, as Philip Walton and Paul McGinley exchanged the lead several times during the final round, before Walton claimed the title for a fourth time.
Mortimer, Manchip and Walton will be trying to add the title again at Mount Juliet but they can expect stiff opposition as a number of players are currently in sparkling form.
Last week, Niall Kearney stormed to success in the Ulster Championship at The Hilton, to finish at 12-under-par with five strokes to spare over Damian Mooney, Michael McDermott and John Kelly. Kearney, who also plays the Challenge Tour, will surely be boosted by that victory.
David Higgins has a seemingly unassailable lead in the 2012 Ping Race to Mount Juliet (Order of Merit) but the championship will, surely, have a major bearing on the points.
East of Ireland Alliance resumes
THE East of Ireland Alliance winter season is ready to resume with the first outing scheduled to take place October 17th at the European Club in Brittas Bay.
Places on the timesheet are available on 0404-47415.
LOSING a couple of shots last week made no difference to Lucans Regina Fitzgerald who chalked up two wins. On Thursday playing off 15, she fired 41 points for the best score of the day which won class one and cost her two shots, but on Saturday – off her new handicap of 13 – she was again top player on the day with 34 points.
The other class winners were Mary Whelan, Fiona Madigan and Ann O’Donnell.
All-Ireland ladies fourball finals
THE Míele All-Ireland Ladies Fourball Championship finals will be staged at Westmanstown Golf Club on Saturday and Sunday next.
The event brings together 32 golfers who will all tee off with high hopes of claiming a national pennant for their club.
Eastern Region winners Dublin City, having defeated Lucan, last year’s winners, will face Ballycastle, victors over Clandeboye in the Northern finals.
Portumna, winners back in 2009, are hopeful of bringing the Pennant home once again having claimed victory over Donegal’s Dunfanaghy in the Western final and they will go head to head against Clonmel who narrowly defeated Skibbereen in the Munster final.
This competition continues to prosper each season and this years tournament, which teed off mid May, saw a record number of 235 clubs involved and over 2,200 lady golfers from across the North, East, South and West taking part.