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My favourite golf course hole: Dermot Bradfield

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There are great vantage points to watch the action from on the picturesque 9th green at Donabate

There are great vantage points to watch the action from on the picturesque 9th green at Donabate

There are great vantage points to watch the action from on the picturesque 9th green at Donabate

Donabate Golf Club is a 27-hole parkland course in north County Dublin, just 12 minutes from Dublin Airport, which offers varying challenges on each nine created by a combination of water hazards, undulating greens and mature trees.

The club, which was founded in 1925, was originally a nine-hole course, but it has evolved over the years and today offers a challenging golf experience on beautiful well manicured greens and fairways. All of the greens are sand-based which makes them playable all year round.

This was the course where local professional golfer Gavin Moynihan learnt the game and where he met the hugely respected club professional Hugh Jackson who would become his coach and mentor right up until his passing in 2015.

Dermot Bradfield is the marketing manager for the course and when asked to pick his favourite hole he immediately plumped for the par-5 9th closing hole.

"The blue 9th hole is called 'The Asylum', which is a play on words to some extent,' he said.

'The local Portrane Mental Hospital is close to the closing hole and asylum also means a 'haven', a place of safety. Many golfers over the years, after a tough unrewarding day on the course, were only too glad to seek asylum in the clubhouse after their endeavours.

'The hole is a straight par-5. 437m from the tmedal tees for men, 399m for the ladies. A straight drive is required if you want to hit the green in two. The water in front of the green needs to be taken into account on approach shots, so you need a good straight drive to put yourself in position to go for it.

'Layup is challenging as the ground falls towards the water feature at the front of the green. The approach shot is tricky as it's out of bounds over the back of the green.

'The balcony on Captain's Day is a sight to behold as it fills with spectators watching the final pairings come in (it plays as the final hole that day).

'Interclub and matchplay games are often decided on this hole and it is always hugely exciting seeing players come down the last in matchplay and looking at the different strategies used.

'Every golfer in Donabate Golf Club would like nothing better than to be 80 metres out in the middle of the fairway with a couple of shots to spare. It makes that walk down the last so enjoyable, knowing you are in the perfect spot to close the round out.

'It's a real risk and reward hole and many a match has been won and lost on this wonderful hole down through the years.'

Fingal Independent