Saturday 24 February 2018

In brief: Ireland revenge

Ireland gained sweet revenge for the defeat they suffered in the final of the European senior men's team championship at Fairhaven earlier in the month when they beat England in their opening match in the Home International series at Crail yesterday.

Early on they were behind in a couple of the foursomes, but, inspired by the legendary Gareth McGimpsey, they won the morning session 2-1.

They were always in the driving seat in the afternoon singles and swept to a comfortable 6-3 success.

McGimpsey, the former Walker Cup captain, was in sensational form as he thrashed Andrew Carman 6&5 playing fantastic match-play golf.

Portmarnock's Adrian Morrow looked sharp as he took control against David Jessup and triumphed 3&2. He gained the point that made Ireland certain winners and then Michael Quirke overcame Chris Reynolds 3&2.

Billy Donlon, three up with four to play on Philip Slater had to go the last to win, while both Maurice Kelly and Tom Cleary narrowly lost.

Wales beat Scotland (4.5-4.5) in the other opening day match.

Jones in the mix

Helen Jones, seeking a quick-fire double after her stunning victory in the Irish Senior Ladies stroke-play championship last week, is very much in contention for the British Seniors Open strokes title after yesterday's first round at Crail.

The Strabane star, who made her full international debut at the age of 50, battled with the elements to return an 80, which was bettered by only two players.

Only Scotland's Maureen Richmond and England's Beverley New returned a lower score and they share the lead going into today's second round with 78s.

Also on the 80 mark is Irish senior international Marilyn Henderson, while lurking dangerously on 81 is defending champion Vicki Thomas from Wales.

Grange's Sheena McElroy and Pat Doran of Donabate are also on 81.

Irish Independent

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