Bridgestone boost for Oder of Merit
The Golf Union of Ireland (GUI) got a serious grip on boosting the importance of Ireland's historic amateur events by landing tyre manufacturing giants Bridgestone as sponsors for its men's and boys' Order of Merit.
The men's Willie Gill Award expanded in recent years to include up to 20 events - the eight main provincial and national championships plus another 12 international events.
With fields suffering at home as our leading players concentrated on chasing World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR) points abroad, the new Bridgestone Order of Merit will be decided on the eight home events alone, with the top two players guaranteed selection for the Home Internationals.
It's hoped the new Order of Merit will encourage more 'elite' players to play at home, boosting the number of WAGR points on offer for all.
Bridgestone will also sponsor the Boys International Order of Merit for performances in nine major events.