Tuesday 20 August 2019

McGrane wins Irish Club Professional title

Flying start: (l-r) Eamonn O’Connell (Director of Golf), Mark Reynolds (GC Manager), Damien
McGrane, John Casey (Dromoland GC captain) and Ian Kearney (Head Professional)
Flying start: (l-r) Eamonn O’Connell (Director of Golf), Mark Reynolds (GC Manager), Damien McGrane, John Casey (Dromoland GC captain) and Ian Kearney (Head Professional)

Damien McGrane birdied the second play-off hole to win the Irish Club Professional Tournament at Dromoland Castle.

The Carlow Golf Club professional from Kells put his experience to good use, taking an aggressive approach off the tee at the short par four 10th which left him 15 feet from the flag.

His chip finished inside tap-in range and when Fota Island Resort's Jack Howard failed to convert a 12-foot birdie effort, McGrane was left with the easiest of putts for victory.

Out early in the day, McGrane and Howard (22) posted rounds of four-under 68.

Howard, birdied the 17th and 18th to force his way to the top while McGrane reached six under par after 11 holes before a couple of mistakes on the 15th and 16th dropped him back.

"First of all I like Dromoland Castle as a golf course, it really is risk and reward. I drove the ball pretty well today so I was able to cut some of the longer holes right down to size," said McGrane.

"The putter went a bit cold after I got to six under. I dropped a couple of shots and had a couple of good chances coming in but I converted nothing.

"I was delighted then to play well in the play-off. I hit a beautiful chip on the last to win the play-off. And I must mention Jack. He is a hell of a player. The Irish region needs new fresh blood and I know he will be a player for the future."

The pre-tournament pro-am was shared by Banbridge's Richard Kilpatrick and Clontarf's Eamonn Brady as they also fired a pair of 68s.

The team event was won by Glasson's Colm Moriarty who guided amateur partners Stephen Nelson, Brian McNamara and Willie Griffin to victory with 87 points.

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