Tuesday 20 February 2018

Army of lederhosen-clad Rebels fails to inspire The Galster

Liam kelly

THE golf was seriously competitive, the weather ranged from brutal lashing rain to sunshine, but thankfully the marvellous eccentricity of the European and Irish fans brightened up the final day of the 12th Solheim Cup.

Step forward 15 fun-loving souls from the county of Cork who dedicated themselves to supporting Germany's Sandra Gal, one of five rookies on Alison Nicholas' team.

And they did it in style by dressing up in Alpine lederhosen, complete with deerstalker hats as they chanted and sang their support for "The Galster" as they called her, at the first tee.

The reason? Gal's caddie, Roy Clarke, hails from the Rebel County, and a group of his former golfing buddies rallied round to back their mate and his player in style.

Former Irish Boys, Youth, and Senior international Aaron O'Callaghan (25), now an assistant professional at Baton Rouge County Club in Louisiana, and Simon Keelan, an assistant pro at Monkstown Golf Club in Cork, were the ringleaders.

Said Keelan: "Roy Clarke is a good friend of ours, and there's 15 of us up from Cork having the craic.

"We checked with Sandra a couple of weeks ago to make sure it would be okay, because we didn't want to be distracting her, but she said, 'yeah, no problem at all'."

The only issue was where the lads would source 15 full-on Alpine lederhosen outfits and, of all places, they found them in Wexford.

Incidentally, O'Callaghan has qualified for the second stage of European Tour Qualifying School to be held in Spain in December.

Sadly for Gal and her lederhosen-clad army, the German golfer lost 6&5 to Brittany Lang.


LAURA Davies delved into her store of 270 putters last Monday to find the magic wand which helped her set a new individual points-scoring record for the Solheim Cup on Saturday.

Davies, who has played in every staging of this event since it began in 1990, eventually found the putter she wanted.

It was an old Maruman club which helped her win the Ladies Irish Open in 1994 and '95.

"I went to the storage shed and got one out. It's the one I used between '94 and '96, and I won about 24 tournaments with it in those years," she said.

"It's got good memories. It's not the nicest looking putter to look down on, not like the modern-day ones with all the nice features, but it works. The ball is really rolling off it nicely."

Davies and Melissa Reid beat Michelle Wie and Brittany Lang 4&3 on Saturday, which meant that the English legend set a Solheim Cup record of 24½ points.

Incidentally, if you wanted to buy one of those Maruman putters on eBay, they'd cost around €1,700.


"I play out of Castlebar. My handicap is 13. I'd get that down to single figures if I had the time but alas I have to play on a bigger golf course."

-- Taoiseach Enda Kenny on sacrificing his golf game for the greater good.

"It was p*****g down and very windy too."

-- Sophie Gustafson's blunt description of the weather.

Irish Independent

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