Sport Golf

Monday 26 September 2016

Bored McGrane leads Ireland's challenge for places on Tour

Brian Keogh

Published 18/11/2015 | 02:30

Damien McGrane moved into the card places with two rounds to go in the European Tour Qualifying School at PGA Catalunya Resort
Damien McGrane moved into the card places with two rounds to go in the European Tour Qualifying School at PGA Catalunya Resort

Bored golfer Damien McGrane hopes he can give himself a 'get out of dishwasher duty' clause after he moved into the card places with two rounds to go the European Tour Qualifying School at PGA Catalunya Resort.

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On a day when Greystones' Paul Dunne found his putting touch and shot a brilliant 68 on the Stadium Course to move up to tied 18th, it's the dogged 44-year-old Meath man who leads the Irish challenge - even if he's not all that interested.

With Kevin Phelan and Simon Thornton also making the four-round cut, Ireland have four players battling to finish inside the crucial top 25.

But even though McGrane says he is "bored" by tournament golf after losing his card following 13 years on tour, he wants to give himself an employment option next season.

Battling

"Am I interested? Right now, no," said McGrane, whose battling 71 left him tied for 14th on eight-under, six shots behind English pair Daniel Gavins and Chris Hanson and South Africa's Jean Hugo.

"Maybe if I sit at home for the next four or five months in miserable weather, loading and unloading the dishwasher, I might say, 'Christ, I'd better go back and play golf'."

McGrane hopes some "great young Irish players" get their cards and Open hero Dunne is now in position after he holed seven putts between five and 30 feet in a five-birdie 68 that moved him to tied 18th on seven-under.

In contrast, Kevin Phelan holed almost nothing as he carded a 73 to lie 44th on three-under, while Simon Thornton shot a one-under 71 to make the cut with a shot to spare and regain some tour status after two miserable years.

Undone by an 87 last Sunday, Rosapenna's Ruaidhri McGee closed with a four-under 66 on the Tour Course but missed the one-under-par cut by seven shots with Headfort's Brian Casey a shot further back after a 71.

Irish Independent

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