2014 National Senior Gents Strokeplay Championships Preview
A look ahead to the three Gents Competitions in Gaeil Colmcille on Sunday
80 GENTS across three grades will take part in Sunday’s National Gents Seniors Strokeplay in Gaeil Colmcille. Communications & Press Officer Jason O’Connor assesses the state of play ahead of the start of play on Sunday at 9am.
36 Gents contest this section with three competitors from the host club involved namely Pat Leavy, Dessie Wyer and Jim Geraghty. Last year’s title was won by a player from the host club (Erry) and the trio from Gaeil Colmcille will be hoping to go one better than their club-mate Ted Tighe did last year in just missing out on victory by a stroke against Fergus Hanley of Erry. 11 of this year’s field are from Munster clubs with Cloghogue’s Eddie Flynn the only entrant in this grade outside the geographic provinces of Leinster and Munster. A quarter of the field is made up of players from the Royal County with 13 counties in total represented amongst the field. It will be interesting to see what the winning score will be at the end of the 36 holes on Sunday morning (that’s if we don’t need a playoff) and will local knowledge be the key to success like last year?
There are a total of 25 entrants in this year’s staging with Riverdale’s Brian Fagan back to try and make amends for missing out on the title by four strokes to Kilbeggan’s John Carton in Erry last year. Noel Farrell is the sole entrant from the host club amongst the field as there are five other players from the Royal County in the section namely Navan duo Tony Lalloway and Brian Maguire along with Royal Meath’s Sean Kelly, Stackallen’s William McNally and Bellewstown’s Peter Collins. One interesting name in this section also is that of Raffen Creek’s Weeshie Murphy who represented Ireland earlier on in the year in the International Challenge with Catalonia. Weeshie is one of five Munster participants in this section, three of the other four of which are from Cork namely ESB duo Sean O’Brien and Benny McCarthy and St Annes’ Michael Lyons with Billy Griffin from Clare Road the other player entered from the southern province. 10 counties in total have representatives in this grade and it should be a close battle to decide the eventual winner.
IT’S a rare occurrence to have more Senior Ladies entered in a competition as opposed to Senior Gents but the latter field this year is one less than its female counterpart with just 19 taking part. A playoff was needed to separate Lucan’s Anthony Malone and Ferbane’s Patsy Reamsbottom in Erry last year after both finished on nine under par with the Dubliner eventually coming out victorious. Both are back in action this weekend in an event noticeable for three of the Irish team from the International Challenge in Catalonia back in June also being involved this Sunday.
Clare Road’s Marty Fawl, Old County’s Christy Broe and St Bridgets’ Frank Ryan stood side by side on the outskirts of Barcelona but they are likely to be more focussed on their own performances as opposed to others this Sunday. Marty is one of only three Munster players taking part on Sunday with Corkbeg’s Michael Barrett and Bruff’s William O’Donovan the other two competitors from Munster. The latter has the chance to complete a unique father and son National double with his son Liam’s success in the National Strokeplay at another Meath course in Stackallen back in July.
There is only one player from Meath amongst the field, Bellewstown’s William Sheridan, but he is a quite capable performer and should feed off the advantage of carrying the county’s hopes on the day. Seven counties are represented in the names entered and thought it might be a small field, that shouldn’t make it any less of a battle royal in the county that bears the same name.
We wish all 176 players across the six grades this weekend the very best of luck along with Gaeil Colmcille in the staging of both days play. Updates will be available on the PPUI website as well as our social media pages across the weekend.
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