Shane Lowry gets over some early anxiety to shoot 66 at Irish Open

Offalyman says he feels the added pressure this week but sits just one off clubhouse lead

Shane Lowry opened with a 66 at Lahinch. Photograph: Donall Farmer/PA

Shane Lowry opened with a 66 at Lahinch. Photograph: Donall Farmer/PA

 

Shane Lowry bore the weight of expectations well, as the 32-year-old Offalyman continued his recent run of good form with an opening round 66, four-under-par, that immediately put him into contention in the DDF Irish Open at sun-kissed Lahinch.

One of the only distractions incurred in his round came as he approached the 18th green, where a climate change protest was briefly staged and a banner unfurled. “I just hung back, didn’t want to be in any photos,” said Lowry, who retained his composure to two-putt for a closing birdie on the Par 5 having reached the green in two.

Lowry’s 66 left him a shot adrift of clubhouse leaders Wade Ormsby, Mike Lorenzo Vera, Hyown Park, Lee Slattery and Thorbjorn Olesen. “It was one of my more enjoyable four or five hours on a course. I didn’t feel I played great but I managed it in the right spots. It’s not easy out there. I know there’s not windy but it is tricky ,” he explained.

“There have been certain weeks over the last while I shot myself in the foot the first round. It was nice to get out there and shoot a good score. I’m not going to lie, I was feeling a bit uneasy this morning, a bit anxious, wanting to get out there and get off to a decent start and I did, so I’m very happy right.

Shane Lowry on the 13th green at Lahinch during the opening round of the Irish Open. Photograph: Oisin Keniry/Inpho
Shane Lowry on the 13th green at Lahinch during the opening round of the Irish Open. Photograph: Oisin Keniry/Inpho

“If it wasn’t the Irish Open this week, I’d be feeling great about coming here and trying to win. Because it’s the Irish Open, with that added pressure, doesn’t mean it should be any other way.”

A three-putt bogey on the third was Lowry’s only bogey and came as a wake-up call. He responded with five birdies on the rest of his card, getting off the mark with a 20-footer on the Par 3 fifth and producing further birdies at the ninth, 12th, 14th and the 18th.

“I think I scored quite well today and that’s what I’ve been doing. I’ve been not getting too down on myself with bad shots, and just getting on with things. You know, mentally I’ve been in a great place the last six or eight months. I had it out there today and hopefully I have the rest of the week,” said Lowry, who headed to the range to hit “15 or 20 balls” to wind down.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.