The Island's Moynihan set for Portugal:Irish strokeplay champion Gavin Moynihan from The Island is one of four players selected by the GUI to play in the Portuguese Amateur Open Championship at Montado Golf Club, south of Lisbon, from February 13th-16th.Joining Moynihan are Alex Gleeson (Castle), Eddie McCormack (Galway) and Pat Murray (Limerick).
Meanwhile, Headfort’s Rory McNamara, winner of the North of Ireland Championship at Royal Portrush last year, will lead a six-man Irish team in the Spanish Amateur Open Championship and Nations Cup at La Manga GC from February 27th to March 3rd.
The other members of the squad are Harry Diamond (Belvoir Park), Richard O’Donovan (Lucan), Chris Selfridge (Moyola Park), Simon Ward (Co Louth) and Reeve Whitson (Mourne).
New format for West of Ireland
A new qualifying structure has been put in place for the West of Ireland Amateur Open Championship at Co Sligo GC, Rosses Point, and will remain as a trial for this year and next.
The top 117 entrants will earn a place in the field under existing qualifying conditions for the traditional first day of the event on Good Friday, March 29th, with the matchplay continuing until Tuesday, April 2nd. A new qualifying round for the next 81 entrants in handicap order will take place on the preceding Wednesday, with the first three players gaining a place in the starting field.
Subsequent vacancies shall be filled in result order in the qualifier.
Minjee Lee cruises to victory in Australia
In the battle of the Lees Western Australia’s Minjee Lee cruised to a 6 and 5 victory over South Australian-based Korean Jenny Lee in the 36-hole final of the Australian Women’s Amateur Championship at Commonwealth Golf Club, Melbourne on Saturday.
Minjee was in control for much of the match and it was a chance for the Royal Fremantle member to go one better than her narrow loss in the final in 2011.
“It feels amazing. It’s such an honour to win this tournament. It’s been a long week so it’s a great reward,” Lee said.
Lee, the current US Girls’ Junior Champion, said she felt she could respond when she was challenged. “I felt I could always get back up if I was down,” she said.
Lee earns an exemption into next month’s ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open at Royal Canberra Golf Club from February 14th-17th.
“It’s an LPGA event so it will have a great field and I’m really looking forward to it,” Lee added.
Defending champion and the world’s top-ranked female amateur, Lydia Ko (NZ) was beaten in the early stages of the championship.
Roganstown to host regional qualifier event
Roganstown will host the 2013 Irish regional qualifier event for the Glenmuir PGA Professional Championship next May.
The north Dublin venue will entertain the Irish golfers on Thursday, May 16th, with qualifiers hoping to make the PGA Championship finale which this year will be held on The Hunting Course at De Vere Slaley Hall from June 11th to 14th. At that event the golfers who have made it through from all the various regional qualifiers will be battling it out for the remaining six places on the Britain and Ireland PGA Cup against the USA which will also be staged in Slaley Hall in September.
Royal County Down and Dún Laoghaire tops
Royal County Down and Dún Laoghaire have been named the top clubs by Portside Publications Golfers Guide to Ireland.
Royal County Down won the overall Links award and Dun Laoghaire the best Parkland course at a presentation by Minister of State for Tourism and Sport Michael Ring in Dublin last week.
The provincial winners were: Portmarnock and Hermitage in Leinster; Royal Portrush and Malone in Ulster; Connemara and Ballinrobe in Connacht; Tralee and Cork in Munster with the best resort award going to Druids Glen.
Patrick Bradshaw from the Blainroe GC won the secretary/manager award while Doonbeg was voted the best hotel.
Michael Davern from The K Club took the hotel manager award with Killeen House the best Boutique Hotel.
ILGU to permit measuring devices
The board of the ILGU has decided to change its policy on the use of distance measuring devices for 2013.
Under the change and for the next 12 months the generic conditions will be amended so as to permit the use of distance measuring devices at all ILGU events provided that the devices conform to the regulations as set down by the RA.
However, at club level, DMDs may only be used if the local rules of the individual club permit use of the distance measuring devices.