Tuesday 16 January 2018

Golf in brief: Smyth has poor finish in Korea

DES SMYTH endured a dizzying, roller-coaster ride as a first round 77 left him tied 45th at five-over at the Songdo Championship, the first US Champions Tour event in Korea.

Smyth's hopes of carving a nice slice of the biggest purse ($3m) on the American seniors circuit were soaring after last Sunday's European victory at Woburn, but he dropped five shots in the final four holes of his rain-delayed first round at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club of Korea.

After fighting his way back to level par with a sweet eagle three at the third (his 12th), the Drogheda man had back-to-back double bogeys, a six at six and a seven at seven, followed by a bogey-four at eight.

Irish duo fail to make grade in qualifying

Irish duo Richard Kilpatrick and Michael Mulryan both failed to make the grade in stage one of the European Tour's qualifying at Barbaroux in France yesterday.

Banbridge pro Kilpatrick's seven-over aggregate of 295 left him three shots outside a top-15 finish needed to qualify, with Athenry man Mulryan only mustering a closing 75 to finish four shots behind Kilpatrick on a 299.

Coakley three off the pace in Paris

IRELAND'S Rebecca Coakley has put her name in the frame for the fourth weekend in succession on the Ladies European Tour.

Coakley, who registered top-10 finishes on her last three outings on Tour, earned a share of seventh place on six-under at The French Open with yesterday's second round 70 at Paris National.

This left the Carlow girl three shy of joint leaders Laura Davies of England and Germany's Caroline Masson.

Jones takes senior strokeplay crown

Irish Senior International Helen Jones (Strabane) was crowned Irish Senior Women's Open Strokeplay champion following a six-shot victory over Canada's Lynda Palahnuik at Laytown and Bettystown GC yesterday.

Jones led from wire-to-wire to capture her first Irish title at any level of the amateur game. Her opening 74 saw her lead the field by three strokes and a 78 on day two left her two ahead of the field going into the final round.

Playing with Wales' Vicki Thomas in the final pairing, she parred the first four holes to extend her lead as Palahnuik took up the challenge. Both turned one-over par, but another string of pars saw Jones take command and a birdie at the final hole confirmed her well deserved victory.

Ireland's team of Jones, Sheena McElroy and Phil O'Gorman won the team event from Wales with Canada taking third place.

Irish Independent

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