Thursday 23 March 2017

Irish collapse a gift for England

Ireland were in a state of shock last night after a dramatic collapse cost them the Senior Home International title at a rainy and windy Rosses Point, Co Sligo.

Having beaten England and Wales, Ireland started the day needing to share the spoils with Scotland to collect the coveted Raymond Trophy for the first time since 2008.

But a disastrous foursomes session which ended with them losing four matches and halving just one put them in an almost impossible position.

As it was they battled bravely and in the end only lost 8.5-6.5 after winning the singles 6-4.

The foursomes were the real problem as Ireland were never in the hunt, went down early on and were always in danger of a heavy reverse.

But as England ended by beating Wales 9.5-5.5, they were the ones who were celebrating last night.

Ireland captain Kevin Flanagan was quite philosophical in defeat.

"That's golf, "he said. "We were in a strong position but just could not finish things off."

England ended up with 27 points ahead of Ireland with 25.5 and Scotland on the 22-point mark, all three countries having won two matches. Wales, without a win, finished with the wooden spoon.

Galbraith flying the flag at Boys' Open

John-Ross Galbraith kept the Irish flag flying in the British Boys' Open Amateur Championship at Burnham and Berrow on the Somerset coast yesterday when he defied the odds to move into the quarter-finals.

Galbraith now faces Patrick Kelly of Boston West this morning for a place in the semi-finals.

"I am absolutely over the moon. To be in the last eight when 252 started out is just great. I played really well today and now I intend to keep the momentum going," the 17-year-old Ulster Boys Champion from Whitehead in Carrickfergus said.

Galbraith -- making his championship debut -- knocked out England international Max Orrin with a birdie on the 19th in the third round after a play-off.

He then delivered the goods when it mattered in round four to eliminate Richard Broadhurst 2&1.

He was one down early on, won three holes in a row to be two up at the turn, but then after a couple of halves he lost two holes on the bounce to be brought back to all-square in a seesaw encounter.

The Northern Ireland teenager then gritted his teeth and birdied the 16th and 17th to win them both and the match.

West Waterford's Gary Hurley, who had gone out earlier to Belgium's Thomas Detry, joined Galbraith when he was one down and started to caddie for him -- and his fortunes immediately took a turn for the better.

Keagan Cummings from Elm Park battled hard in round three against German Steffen Harm, but went down 2&1.

Details in FACTFILE

Irish Independent

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