Saturday 25 February 2017

Freak break to thumb puts Lowry out of action for month

Liam Kelly

Liam Kelly

SHANE LOWRY is facing a month out of action due to a freak thumb injury. The Offaly man (22) slipped and hurt his hand three weeks ago and while he initially thought it was little more than a ligament strain, he had an X-ray on the thumb last Thursday week in Tullamore Hospital.

They put on a support plaster cast, and last Wednesday Lowry returned for further investigation. A CAT scan confirmed that one of the small bones between the wrist and thumb had been fractured, and the golfer is due to see a specialist in Dublin next Tuesday to ascertain his options.

The Clara native’s initial fear was that he would miss the ‘Desert Swing’ – a series of lucrative tournaments in Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Qatar and Dubai – which Lowry had targeted to start his 2011 campaign. Abu Dhabi starts on January 20, with the other events following in quick succession, but his backroom team are hopeful he could resume in February.

This injury will frustrate the young man who turned professional in a blaze of glory after he won the ‘3’ Irish Open at County Louth Golf Club in May 2009, becoming only the third amateur to win a Tour event.

Lowry didn’t get any money for that victory, but he did gain a precious two-year exemption on Tour, which only officially began last January.

By turning pro after the Irish Open win, Lowry had a free six months during which he could gain valuable experience of life as a professional without needing to earn a Tour card.

He used his time well, as between June and December 2009 he played in 19 events, winning €144,843. In 2010 he finished 62nd in the Race to Dubai order of merit, winning €501,728.

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