Monday 19 February 2018

In brief: Irish Open set for Killarney return

Golf

The overwhelming success of this year's Irish Open will see the event return to Killarney in 2011, according to Keith Waters, director of international policy with the European Tour.

"We are still talking to sponsors '3' about where we are going to host next year's event," said Waters.

"We moved to Killarney because of the holiday period and it was very successful. So it does seem the intention is not to change Killarney as the venue." The European Tour has confirmed the event will be staged from July 28-31, 2011.

Meanwhile, Rocco Mediate held his nerve while shrugging off five bogeys in 12 holes to win his first PGA Tour title in eight years with a thrilling one-shot victory at the Frys.com Open in San Martin on Sunday.

Three ahead overnight, Mediate was caught by four other players on the back nine and briefly surrendered the outright lead before sealing the wire-to-wire win with a spectacular finish.

The 47-year-old American sank an 18-foot birdie putt at the 16th and then holed out from the fairway to eagle the 17th on the way to a two-over-par 73 at CordeValle Golf Club.

Athletics

US Olympic 400m champion LaShawn Merritt has been suspended until July 2011 after testing positive for a banned substance found in a male enhancement product, the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) said yesterday.

The Beijing gold medallist had three samples test positive for prohibited testosterone prohormones, the anti-doping agency said in a statement. He was suspended for 21 months, beginning October 28, 2009 -- the date of his first sample.

Merritt had accepted in April a provisional suspension "as a result of positive drug tests caused by his use of an over-the-counter male enhancement product", the American athlete's attorney Howard Jacobs said in a statement at the time.

Tennis

OFFICIALS in Tennis Ireland will have to find a new Davis Cup non-playing captain for next year's Europe-Africa Zone Group Two campaign.

The national governing body dropped a bombshell yesterday when they announced that Sean Sorensen was stepping down after serving four years in the hot seat.

Ex-Wimbledon participant Sorensen, whose sons Louk and Kevin have also represented Ireland in the Davis Cup, took over from Owen Casey in early 2007.

And in his first year at the helm, he guided Ireland to promotion from Europe-Africa Zone Group Three, after an unbeaten run in five ties in Cairo.

Cork native Sorensen, who has been living in Stuttgart since the late 70s and recently returned to the German city after spending two years in Dublin, last week informed the current crop of Davis Cup players of his intentions.

Ireland are at home to Luxembourg in their opening Davis Cup tie on March 7-9 next.

Irish Independent

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