Short game


Compiled by  SHAY KEENAN

Higgins still setting the pace

AFTER another very busy week on the PGA Irish Region calendar, with events in Mount Wolseley and Connemara both counting for the Ping 2012 Race To Mount Juliet, David Higgins from Waterville has strengthened his grip on the Order Of Merit leaderboard.

Higgins posted scores of 73 and 69 in Connemara for a two-under-par aggregate total of 142 to move from third place overnight to finish two strokes clear of David Ryan as the Cahir Park professional took second spot on his own.

Gary Murphy was in red-hot form on the back nine at Mount Wolseley to win the Red Mills charity pro-am.

Murphy stormed home in a very impressive score of five-under-par 31 to post a winning tally of 68.

Those two results last week in Connemara and Mount Wolseley mean that in the “Race to Mount Juliet” Higgins continues to lead the way with an impressive total of 32,172.84 points with his nearest challenger Barrie Trainor next best on 24,236.66.

Following those two are David Ryan (Cahir Park) with 23,359.17, Donal Gleeson (Old Conna) 21,164.01, Michael Allan (Pure Golf Leopardstown) 18,691.28 and then Mark Staunton (Ballinasloe) 18,676.90.

Intervarsity finals bound for Tramore

A NEW era for Intervarsity golf will begin on Monday next when the Intervarsity Championship takes place at Tramore Golf Club under the joint management of the Golfing Union of Ireland and Irish Ladies Golf Union.

Previously administered by the Irish Colleges Golf Association, the GUI and ILGU agreed earlier this year to jointly administer the Intervarsity competition programme, and the event in Tramore – which over the past number of years has become the home of the Intervarsity Championships – is the first of these.

The Intervarsity Championship will take place on Monday and Tuesday with a format of 54-holes strokeplay for men (world amateur golf ranking points applying) and 36 holes for women.

Entries close by tomorrow Wednesday at 1pm sharp. Late entries will not be accepted. The entry form is available to download at GUI, and must be sent electronically to

Payne takes Munster Veterans title

NOEL PAYNE from Ennis was a three-shot winner of the Munster Veterans Championship at the picturesque Dooks Golf Club in Glenbeigh, Co Kerry, last week.

Payne, who played in his 50th South of Ireland Championship earlier this year, shot 84 and 73 for a 157 total and a three-shot winning margin over Bert Burke from Moate who carded two rounds of 80.

In third place was Cork’s Peter Cowley with rounds of 85 and 76 for 161. The best nett was won by Conor Stack from Tralee with 146.

THE Leinster Alliance commences its season on Sunday October 14th with an outing to the Grange Golf Club.

The Alliance has been running since 1919 and now provides winter golf for single-figure handicap golfers .

Further details can be had by contacting Michael Neary at 01-2827297 between 9am to 5pm or or Brian Williams at 086-2524089.

THE Irish Under-16 team to play England at Huddersfield Golf Club from October 13th-14th: David Carey (Carton House), Karl Eccles (Clandeboye), Kevin LeBlanc (The Island), Rowan Lester (Hermitage), Neil McKinstry (Cairndhu), Cameron Mills (Shandon Park), James Sugrue (Mallow), Rory Williamson (Holywood).

The team captain is Roy Archibald (Shandon Park).

Dublin Fire Brigade Society back in winners' enclosure

THE Dublin Fire Brigade Golfing Society won their second Dublin United Golfing Societies Association (DUGSA) Challenge Cup in three years at Woodbrook GC recently.

Dublin Fire Brigade GS totalled 211.5 with St Sylvester’s GAA GS second on 218.5, Knights of the Road GS third on 221.5 and Artane GS fourth on 223.5.

The winning team was represented by: Joe Kelly and Danny Colgan who carded a nett 68½, Robbie Connolly and John Foster added a 69½ while Colm Sherlock and Bob Leggett returned a 73½. Connolly and Foster also won the prize for the best gross score with an 80 while the best nett of 68 was recorded by Jimmy Penrose and Brian Duggan of Artane GS.

WOODBROOK seniors won the Old Conna Invitational Seniors Competition for the second time in four years last week.

Team members must be over 55 years with a minimum handicap of 18. Old Conna, Edmondstown, Stackstown and Woodbrook qualified for the final. The Woodbrook middle order pairings did the damage with better ball score of 47 points from Tony Swaine and Tony Walsh and 44 points from Jim O’Shea and Niall Stuart.

Those scores helped them to an overall average of 41 points.

The other members of the team were Harry Brady, Patrick O’Kane, Gary Forde, Tony Durcan, Ciaran Ronan, Ciaran Fitzgerald, Walter Browne and Seán Burke.

Duo selected for trip to Argentina

RICHARD O’Donovan from Lucan and Reeve Whitson from the Mourne club have been selected by the GUI for the International Team Tournament – Juan Carlos Tailhade Cup and the 117th Argentine Amateur Championship.

The Juan Carlos Tailhade Cup will be played from Thursday, November 8th to Sunday, November 11th at Lagartos Country Club.

Following the Juan Carlos Tailhade Cup, between Tuesday, November 13th and Sunday, November 18th, the Argentine Amateur Championship will take place at Pilar Golf Club, one of the sixth oldest amateur championships in the world.

Malone continue their winning ways

MALONE added the All-Ireland senior foursomes title to their district crown following an impressive win over East Leinster champions Hermitage at the Private Home Care Inter-Club Championship Finals at Courtown on Saturday.

The Belfast club defeated Hermitage 2½ to ½ thanks to wins for Paula Delaney and Ann Brown and Louise Coffey and Karina Brady, while Jane Gardner and Oonagh McClure halved their match.

In the junior foursomes Glen of the Downs defeated Rockmount 2-1 in the final. Dún Laoghaire won the Challenge Cup in style defeating Castletroy 4-1.

On Friday Wexford won the Junior Cup title with a dramatic 3-2 win over Clandeboye with Carmel Murphy securing the trophy at the first extra hole. In the Intermediate Cup final, Lee Valley pipped Malone 3-2 while Mountbellew won the Minor Cup title with a 3½ to 1½ win over St Anne’s.

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