Friday 24 November 2017

Having Wobbly should help Cutler

On turning professional late in 1995, Pádraig Harrington made what seemed the surprising decision of taking on veteran John O'Reilly as his caddie. Having such an experienced old hand to show him the ropes, however, proved a shrewd move.

After a brilliant Walker Cup, Paul Cutler is to have a similar arrangement as a newly-signed pro with Horizon Sports. Conor Ridge, the Horizon boss, believes that Phil Morbey, affectionately known as Wobbly, can offer invaluable experience to the 22-year-old from Portstewart.

Wobbly had 11 years with Ian Woosnam, including the 1991 US Masters triumph. Eventually, they had a tearful parting in 2001 when Woosie cut down significantly on his tournament schedule. Only three months later, the tenure of Wobbly's replacement, Miles Byrne, was doomed when he famously failed to notice 15 clubs in Woosnam's bag on the final day of the Open at Lytham.

Cutler makes his tournament debut in this week's Austrian Open, followed by the Dunhill Links.

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London footballers will remember this year for a long time to come. The win over Fermanagh last June was the 'county's' first championship success in 34 seasons.

Over the years, many Irishmen forced to move abroad donned the London jersey and most still look back on their time there with great pride. The Irish World newspaper recently set about trying to name the best London team of the last 50 years and the 15 chosen and subs will be feted at a function in Muswell Hill Golf Club this Wednesday night.

The team chosen was: Pat McGrath (Longford); John McCormack (Dublin), John Jennings (Mayo), Peter Pritchard (Cavan); Tony Flynn (Kerry), Joe Madden (Mayo), Bobby O'Dwyer (Cork); Gerry O'Mahoney (Kerry), Patsy McKenna (Fermanagh); Jackie Devine (Longford), John O'Mahoney (Kerry), Billy O'Connell (Kerry); John McPartland (Down), Brian Devlin (Derry), Gene Driscoll (Kerry).

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LEINSTER rugby have organised an interesting recruitment drive in which they are hoping to uncover some new talent, specifically to play in the second row. Route 6'6" is an open screening day in Donnybrook on Saturday, October 8 to which people over 6'5" and between the ages of 17 and 23 are invited to come along -- whether they've played the game before or not.

It's an interesting take on trials and the physical-specific aspect of it attracted our attention. Further days are planned and we wonder how they will be named -- a day to find new recruits for the front row might be advertised as 'No Neck Needed'.

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As demand for All-Ireland final tickets increased towards the middle of last week, so did the price people were willing to pay for them. Hundreds of euro were being offered online for stand tickets, but there were also some unusual exchange deals to be had. One ticketless fan was prepared to swap a fourball at Killeen Castle for the chance to be in Croke Park, and there was another offer of a Renault Megane with good tyres and an NCT.

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It's common knowledge that there has been a clean-out in the Dublin football camp over the last number of years, but on closer inspection the severity of the cull is pretty surprising. A quick look at a squad photo from 2005 shows that 25 out of the 35 players pictured are no longer involved. Among the once household names of football in the capital who have departed the squad are Conal Keaney, Jason Sherlock, Colin Moran, Shane Ryan, Ciaran Whelan, Mark Vaughan and Kevin Bonner.

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Not only were Irish people impressed with Ireland's performance yesterday but it seems like sports people all around the world were too. Stars like Robbie Savage, Sebastien Chabal and John Hartson all took to Twitter to congratulate the boys in green. It was nice to see that Chabal doesn't hold any grudges against the Munster players who almost reduced him to tears on a famous night in Thomond Park. He even referred to the Irish team as 'our friends'.

Dermot Gilleece, John Greene,

Fergus McDonnell and Marie Crowe

ssport@independent.ie

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