In the first of a two-part piece on the history of National Foursomes finals, John Manning takes a look at previous winning pairs from Tipperary.
National Mixed Foursomes 2008 (sponsored by Brophy Bros. Builders, Blessington)
Sister and brother Laura O'Hanrahan (15) & Rory O'Hanrahan (4) from Hillview dovetailed splendidly at Castletown on Sunday September 21st to clinch the Sean Coyne trophy with a tremendous score of +18. Playing off three and four respectively, Tracey McGrath and her brother Joseph McGrath from Erry filled second place on +16.
With a combined scratch handicap, Templebreedy’s Ray (+3) and Linda Murphy (3) of Collins fashioned a fabulous 14 under par 94 to take the first of their three Best Gross wins in the event (with +14).
Robert and Marie Black of Bellewstown were unlucky, signing for 15up and finishing outside the prizes.
Damien Fleming and Mary Murphy of Deerpark (who would go to win in 2013 having claimed runners-up spot in 2009) finished joint 5th on 14up.
1. Laura O'Hanrahan & Rory O'Hanrahan (Hillview) +18
2. Tracey McGrath & Joe McGrath (Erry) +16
Best Gross: Linda Murphy (Collins) & Ray Murphy (Templebreedy) +14
1st 18: Marian Byrne & Ian Dillon (S. Bridget's) +11
2nd 18: Catherine McCreevy (Navan) & Ian Farrelly (Duleek) +10
Other leading scores: Robert & Marie Black (Bellewstown) +15
Mary Murphy & Damien Fleming (Deerpark) +14
Wally Sheridan (Bellewstown) and Kay Geraghty (Skryne) +12
Teresa Fagan and Eddie Kinsella (Royal Meath) +11; Mary Farrell Marty Reilly (Gaeil Colmcille) +11 Cathy Richardson and Tom Costello (Bellewstown) +10
National Mixed Foursomes 1999
There was a very close finish to the final of the National Mixed Foursomes at the Cloghogue club in Newry on Sunday September 26th.
Noel Joyce, the man who had twice in the past played on Tipperary Inter-County wining sides, teamed-up with his Hillview (Clonmel) clubmate Brid Ryan to a total of 11 up for the 36 holes versus par in ideal, sunny conditions. That gave the Tipperary pair, Noel Joyce and Brid Ryan (the 1997 Tipperary County Ladies Strokeplay Champion) the National Mixed Foursomes title on the Back 18 from Down Inter-County star, Paul O'Hagan and 1997 National Ladies Strokeplay champion, Marina O'Rourke, of the host club Cloghogue.
Noel Joyce and Brid Ryan carded rounds of +6 and +5 and that +5 second 18 gave Noel Joyce and Brid Ryan the 1999 title and the Sean Coyne Memorial Trophy on the tiebreaker. Marina O'Rourke and Paul O'Hagan carded a brilliant +10 (and 10 under par gross) first round but faltered somewhat on the second round with +1. In an interesting twist, Paul O'Hagan and Noel Joyce were colleagues on the successful Ireland team that toured Catalonia in 1997.
Winners of the Best Gross were the combination of Irish international, Ian Donnelly and Ann Fagan, the Louth Inter-County player, from Cement. Ann Fagan and Ian Donnelly, boosted by an ace from Donnelly at the ninth, recovered from a shaky start to post +6 Gross and win by two from reigning National Strokeplay champion, Niall Cuffe and Melinda Seery of Kilbeggan.
Noel Joyce and Brid Ryan became the first Tipperary couple to win the National Mixed Foursomes since 1981. Holders Ger Wallace and Mary Dore from the Croom club in Co. Limerick put up an excellent defence of their title. They posted rounds of +2 and +7 for a total of 9up and finished fourth.
1. Noel Joyce and Brid Ryan (Hillview) +11, winners on the Second 18 holes
2. Paul O'Hagan and Marina O'Rourke (Cloghogue) +11
Best Gross: Ian Donnelly and Ann Fagan (Cement) +6
Other leading scores: +9 Robert Black and Mary Black (Bellewstown); Ger Wallace and Mary Dore (Croom)
+8 Ian Donnelly and Ann Fagan (Cement); Ger O'Connor and Philip Byrne (Glenville); Brian Durnin and Maeve Rossiter (Glenville); Tony Killoran and Pauline Moran (Glenville)
+7 Stella Cahill and Joe Flanagan (Glenville); Jim Forde and Mary Forde (St. Stephen's); Pat Earls and Kay Scanlon (Parteen)
National Mixed Foursomes 1981
Waterford Glass on October 4th 1981 saw the first ever Co. Tipperary victory in the National Mixed Foursomes.
The big gallery was enthralled as the joint leaders the eventual winners and runners-up played the 36th green both tied on 13 up. Charlie O'Neill narrowly missed from 10-feet to lose the final hole and finish on 12 up. Then Richard O'Halloran (7) and Christine Glasheen (17) came to the last green needing a four to win. In a tension-packed atmosphere, Christine brilliantly holed a nine foot putt to take the title.
1. Richard O'Halloran & Christine Glasheen (Tipperary Hills) +13
2. Sandy O'Neill & Charley O'Neill (Irish Ropes) +12
Best Gross: Richie Cummins & Nancy Tuohy (Catholic Institute) +6
Best Waterford pair: Martin Carroll and Mary Drohan (NCP) +3
Other leading scores: Ted and Kay Foley (St. Anne’s) +8; Gerard & Marie O’Sullivan (Majestic) +8
Brian Hunt & Joan Kelly (Dunlops) +7
Michael Hayes was the John Player representative in attendance.
Tomorrow: We look at the Finals in the format that have been held in Tipperary.