McDermott ready to give his all for new club Carton
FORMER Irish international Gary McDermott embarks on a new challenge this season in the AIG Senior Cup.
McDermott won a second Senior Cup medal last year with County Sligo when they defeated Rosapenna 3-2 in the final at Royal Tara GC. He was the only County Sligo team member who had featured in their 2007 victory, so the achievement was very special.
McDermott is now based in Dublin with AIB and will play for Carton House in the Leinster campaign. Carton House begin their challenge at Dun Laoghaire GC, which, along with Corballis and Druids Heath, is a host venue for Leinster Senior Cup qualifying on June 28/29.
"It's going to be new to me this year compared to playing in Connacht. In Connacht there's basically qualifying on a Saturday and then semi-final and final on the Sunday," says McDermott.
"It's going to be – hopefully – a longer campaign with Carton but I'm more than happy to be playing with them. It will be different playing for Carton instead of Sligo, but I'll be giving it my all."
McDermott's best performance of the season was in the Irish Amateur Open last month.
He led by two going into the final round at Royal Dublin, but shot 76 and ended up joint second behind winner Jamie Savage of Scotland.
"I felt like Liverpool. It was great, you'd have taken it at the outset and all that, but it would have been nice to win. You ask yourself will you ever get that chance again, but you have to keep knocking at the door and hope you find the key some time," says McDermott.
Meanwhile, Claremorris, the 2013 Connacht Pierce Purcell Shield winners and All-Ireland finalists, were beaten 3-2 by Westport in the West Connacht region.
In Ulster, Clandeboye, winners of the Barton Shield last year – they beat County Sligo in the final – begin the defence of their provincial and national pennants at Donaghadee on June 15.
Down south, Waterford Castle are trusting to youth in their Jimmy Bruen Shield campaign.
Team manager John Dalton has seven secondary school students in his panel for the Munster finals weekend at Faithlegg on July 20.
Dalton, who played with Waterford Castle when they last reached the provincial semi-finals in 1998, oversaw a nail-biting victory against Mitchelstown in the East Munster final.
Liam Coady and Gary Smith secured the winning point on the 20th hole in their 3-2 victory.
* AIG offer GUI/ILGU members exclusive discounted rates on car, home and travel insurance – log on to www.aig.ie/golf or call 1890 405 405