Communications & Press Officer Jason O’Connor reports on the opening day of play at the Provincial Inter-County in both Leinster and Munster.
THE last event of the day to finish this Saturday evening but Meath won the Intermediate Gents title in Lucan after overhauling a Dublin side that had led after the first 18 holes of Scotch Foursomes. The host county looked to be in a strong position in leading by four strokes after the First round with a combined total of 11 under for their three pairings but Meath managed to go ahead in the Singles thanks to no small part to rounds of five under par from Sean Clerkin along with a four under par round from Paul O’Rourke.
Paul Dolan, Jason Hughes, Kevin Carolan and Jason Gibney also contributed to their winning total of 483 as a 13 shot swing proved unlucky for Dublin who eventually had to settle for third on countback to Louth with 491. Colin Campbell and Owen Cooney shot under par for Louth in the Singles in helping them to second. Offaly just missed out a medal by a stroke in fourth meanwhile on 492. The Junior Gents title was retained by Kilkenny in Lucan also as they had six shots to spare over Dublin in a winning total of 529.
One over combined for their three Scotch Foursomes rounds saw the defending champions lead at the halfway stage with the winning side of Derek Delaney, Derek Whelan, Aidan Gibbons, Sean Meany, Tom Fitzpatrick and Robert Middleton keeping the title in both club and county. Delaney, Fitzpatrick and Middleton all had rounds of sub 60 in the Singles. Stephen Needham had level par for the Dubs on his home course but they finished with 535 with Kildare third four shots further back as Westmeath finished fourth on 546.
Success for Westmeath would come in the U-16 event in Glenville however as they had a convincing 26 shot victory over the field. A great round of six under par from Brian Bray and Jack Mullins in the Scotch Foursomes gave them their platform as Jack Buckley along with Padraig Carton both broke 60 in the Singles to help a side also featuring Conor Mullins and Eanna Rabbitte in giving them their winning total of 528.
Daniel and Michael Fox along with Dominic Scully all broke 60 for Offaly in the Singles but they had to settle for a score of 554, nine clear of Kildare in third. Darragh Behan and Eoin Lane both had a Scotch Foursomes round of level par for the Lilywhites but they finished on 563 as despite Evan Carry shooting a Singles round of 57, Meath ended up in fourth on 566.
The Intermediate and Junior Ladies events in Glenville were shared between Kildare and Dublin with the Lilywhites once again winning the Intermediate honour. They held a two point Stableford lead over Dublin after the Scotch Foursomes with sisters Mary Donnelly and Rose Kelly shooting 31 points together as they also brought in the two best Singles totals in combining with Mairead O’Toole and Elizabeth Smyth for a winning total of 161 points. Offaly would push on in the Singles to take second from the Dubs with 153 points, Ger Ryan, Annie Galvin and Marie McEvoy scoring well in the Singles bringing them the silver medals as Dublin’s Scotch Foursomes scores were enough to hold off Louth for third on 144 points.
Dublin’s Junior Ladies team’s winning total of 141 points was only three behind their Intermediate counterparts as after being level with Westmeath after the Scotch Foursomes on 53 points. Miriam Salmon (24) and Christine Mulvey (23) brought Dublin over 100 points with Breda Boyle and Susan Ritchie the only members of the winning Dublin side. Westmeath ended eight points behind the Dubs in second on 133 with defending champions Louth two shots ahead of Kildare in claiming third after shooting 130 points with Mary Coyle scoring 23 of them in the Singles.
INAUGURAL winners of the Intermediate Gents event back in 2014, Kerry ended Cork’s three year reign as Champions in Munster by coming from seven shots behind to pip host county Limerick by one stroke in Parteen today. It looked a big ask when they trailed Cork by seven shots after the Scotch Foursomes as their pairings of Gearóid Cronin & James Fleming, Padraig Hobbart & John O’Brien and Killian O’Gorman and Eamon Sheehy all had three under par rounds for their Scotch Foursomes in giving them nine under par halfway alongside playing partners Tipperary.
Cork were on 16 under with Limerick 15 under combined after the Scotch Foursomes but O’Gorman (six under) and Sheehy (four under) were inspired for the Kingdom in the Singles as they eventually brought themselves to a lead score of 21 under par, 467. Despite seven under par Scotch Foursomes rounds from John Farrell & Joseph Riordan for Limerick as well as JJ Quirke & Jimmy Quinn for Cork, the two counties struggled in the Singles with too many over par scores costly for the two leading counties with Limerick finishing second on 468. The defending champions would miss out a medal to Tipperary meanwhile as a five under par round from Brian O’Flynn in the Singles helped the Premier County to third place on 471 after Ray Lyons & Michael Kirby (six under) along with Sean & John Minogue (five under) scored well in the Scotch Foursomes for them.
The Ladies played in a combined event across all grades with the Gross prize won by the Cork Senior side as Mary Murray, Sarah Byrne, Siobhan Scannell and Linda Murphy all combined for a total of 206 points in claiming the title. The Nett event came down to countback between the other two Cork sides as their Intermediate and Junior sides both tied on 235 points. Better Back 9’s gave the Intermediate side of Mairead Manning, Sarah O’Neill, Ailish Sexton and Vera McCarthy the main nett prize.
Tipperary’s Intermediate side claimed Third Nett by two points from their senior side as Elaine and Mary Quinn along with Frances Ryan and Bridget Shelley all combined for a total of 232 points.
Click on the above scoresheets to see how all the other teams in both provinces fared today.