CONOR Murphy capped a wonderful season when he led the field home to capture the Open singles play-off title on Saturday.
The competition began back on March 7, when Paddy Grace was the first qualifier for this year’s final. Since that early Spring day, every Wednesday since the qualifiers have continued in record breaking fashion throughout the remainder of Spring through Summer and finally into early October.
The qualifiers featured record numbers of visitors coming to the club thanks to the introduction of an early bird system, which offered great value for players from other clubs to enjoy the facilities on offer. The quality of the playing surfaces throughout this entire season was wonderful with the facilities receiving great feedback.
More than 80 golfers qualified for Saturday’s playoff, a round which was played in very wet conditions. Indeed, had the morning’s rain not eased off the competition may well have had to be rearranged.
Murphy, the overall winner, is a very promising young golfer from Kilmanagh. Saturday’s victory was latest in a series of excellent performances which began about five years ago when, as a 12-year-old, Conor joined the Sean Walzer-organised junior section. Throughout his association with the club Conor has improved rapidly.
Playing off 12 on Saturday, Conor amassed 40 points which saw him home by two shots from Paul Madigan who has been in excellent form in the latter half of the season with a series of solid performances. The best gross score was shot by another product of the junior system, Ryan O’Dwyer, who had an excellent one over total in difficult conditions.
In third place was Dwayne Martin who was only denied second place on a countback, while fourth-placed Eugene Lawrence was a further shot back with 37 points.
All qualifiers were treated to a meal for achieving their places in the final and the full array of prizes were suitable for such a competitive competition. Thanks went to all who played throughout the Summer.
In light of the success of the competition the club has now launched a Winter edition of the qualifiers with 18 hole singles being held every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Fee is E12 for a first entry and E10 subsequently for non-members, with members paying E6 and E3 for subsequent competitions.
The competition will be run on a league basis with every player’s best three cards to count over the months of October, November, December, January, February and March, with players having three cards to count in order to qualify for the final.
The first prize is a set of irons, with many other prizes to play for as well as monthly prizes.
FOURBALL - Conor Murphy made sure it was a weekend to remember when he teamed up with his father Michael to win another competition on Sunday.
In this men’s fourball, sponsored by Kelliher’s Electrical, Conor and Michael had a brilliant 45 points to pip this year’s President, John O’Dwyer and his partner Sean Brett on a countback in conditions which were thankfully better than the previous day.
Conor’s new handicap is 11. He is surely destined to play off single figures in the very near future.
LOTTO - There was no winner of this week’s lotto jackpot. Lucky dip winners were Brendan Power, Bill Eustace and Anne Bowen, while the sellers’ prize were won by John Kinsella and John O’Neill.
This week’s jackpot is E950. The draw will be made tomorrow (Thursday) at the earlier time of 7.30pm.
RESULTS - Results, Men’s Open Singles playoff final, October 1: 1 Conor Murphy, 40pts; 2 Paul Madigan, 38pts; gross Ryan O’Dwyer, 35pts; 3 Dwayne Martin, 37pts; 4 Eugene Lawrence, 37pts.
Results, Ladies 55 Club, September 29: 1 Ann Bowen, 2 Ann Ryan, 3 Annette Hogan, 4 Ann Hickey, 5 Bid Byrne, 6 Teresa Drea.
Results, ladies competition, September 27: (0-18): 1 Kathleen Phelan, 35pts; 2 Laura Morrissey, 35pts. (19-28): 1 Monica Leydon, 38pts; 2 Eileen Cuddihy, 37pts. (29-36): 1 Aoife Lanigan, 35pts; 2 Kay O’Neill, 35pts.
Results, RGA, September 26: 1 Gerry McEvoy, 26pts; 2 Don Bolger, 26pts; 3 Marty Parker, 25pts.
DIARY - Today (Wednesday): Men’s Open Singles League. Tomorrow (Thursday): Ladies 55 Club, 10.30am to 12 noon. Friday: Men’s Open Singles League.
Saturday: Men’s Open Singles League. Sunday: Sceilp Inn Men’s Singles Stroke (Golfer of the Year points).
Monday: RGA, 11am to 1pm. Tuesday: Ladies Day (all day).