Shane Lowry says September scheduling ‘a great date for the Irish Open’

Offaly man finishes joint-third at the K Club as Sweden’s Vincent Norrman claims the title

Vincent Norman shows his delight after finishing his fourth round at the K Club. Photograph: Ben Brady/Inpho

Shane Lowry, who came within touching distance of adding a second Horizon Irish Open to his career Curriculum Vitae after finishing tied-third behind Sweden’s Vincent Norrman at The K Club, has endorsed the tournament’s move to a later slot on the DP World Tour’s schedule.

This 68th edition of the tournament marked the first time it was staged in September, in the weekend ahead of the tour’s flagship BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth, and Lowry is convinced it has finally found its rightful place in the calendar.

“Obviously you’re going to get me and Rory and Pádraig, whatever Irish players are out there [(on the PGA Tour]. You’ve got Adam Scott, Billy Horschel this year and I would argue that, if the Ryder Cup wasn’t on in two weeks time, maybe next year you’d get more Americans. I think this is a great date for the Irish Open,” insisted Lowry.

Next year’s tournament will take place at Royal Co Down – with the exact date yet to be finalised – and the tournament will return to The K Club in Straffan, Co Kildare, for 2025 and again in 2027 (which will be the centenary of the first tournament which was played at Portmarnock).


“The K Club works for everybody. For the sponsors, Horizon, who’ve got their [headquarters] in Dublin. The venue itself, with the hotel on site ... I think the golf course has been amazing this week and they’ve done a great job,” added Lowry, who finished as leading Irish player, two shots behind the champion.

Norrman’s win – which earned him a cheque for €951,046 and moved him to seventh on the Race to Dubai order of merit – was the second of his career, coming just six weeks after his breakthrough success in the Barbasol Championship.

The tournament also marked the start of Mark Power’s professional life, as the 23-year-old finished in tied-33rd which earned him a payday of €40,839.

“Everything happened very quickly. I was on such a high after playing the Walker Cup at St Andrews and then the adrenaline dropped. To find out I was getting in here, it was a whirlwind of emotions. I definitely feel tired now. Very happy with the week. It was a great learning curve as well,” said Power.

For Power, his next assignment was a flight to Austria for the DP World Tour’s first stage of qualifying. For McIlroy and Lowry, it was in catching the special Ryder Cup charter flight for the European Team reconnaissance trip to Rome..

Philip Reid

Philip Reid

Philip Reid is Golf Correspondent of The Irish Times