Saturday 23 September 2017

PGA chief hints at Major for Portrush

GOLF

ROYAL PORTRUSH is back in the running to host a Major, only this time it's the PGA Championship.

Sensationally, PGA of America president Ted Bishop nominated Portrush as he discussed a proposal for the season's fourth Major to travel beyond US shores.

"Royal Portrush would be a great first international Major venue," Bishop said.

"Given the powerful effect Irish players have on the professional game today, it might be a good place to start."

Portrush accommodated massive crowds at last year's Irish Open and hosted the 1951 British Open, but the R&A suggest it would struggle to accommodate the infrastructure of a modern Major.

IRISH START ON ICC ROAD TO NOWHERE

IRELAND begin their World T20 qualifying campaign against Namibia today knowing that even winning the two-week long tournament in the UAE will not guarantee a match-up against the big boys next March.

Sadly, the much trumpeted 'expansion' of the World T20 finals in Bangladesh to 16 teams – including six non-Test match playing nations – has proved to be little more than a mirage.

Yes, six of the 16 minnows competing in the UAE this month will be invited to Bangladesh, but only to join the hosts and Zimbabwe in another qualifier from which only two teams will progress to the main event.

It is a formula that the International Cricket Council would also like to adopt for editions of the 50-overs World Cup from 2019 and one that threatens Ireland's regular participation on the bigger stages.

Three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti has announced his retirement.

The Scot said he was quitting on medical advice following a heavy crash in Houston last month that left him with spinal and head injuries.

Michael Phelps is back in the US drug-testing program, the strongest sign yet that he's planning to compete in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

Phelps' longtime coach Bob Bowman revealed last month that the icon had resumed occasional training in Baltimore. Bowman, however, characterised it more as an effort to get in shape than launch a comeback.

Irish Independent

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