John down to single figure handicap

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LAST week saw the final Wednesday Sweep of September played at the Lurgan course and after two days of heavy rain the golfers had to contend with soft underfoot conditions.

This did not unduly worry the 65 odd golfers on the day as 14 responded with tidy under par returns.

John Hartnett had the winning score of 41 points. The ten handicapper had a great start with five opening pars. He birdied the eighth and managed bogeys on the other three holes. More exciting play followed on the inward nine. He pencilled in six pars and had bogeys at holes thirteen, fifteen and seventeen. John found himself one point clear of the closing field. John set himself a target of being a single figure handicapper before the end of the year and he now has accomplished that feat.

Both Mark O’Neill and Francie Tallon fired scores of 40 points and the usual count back came into operation. As a result Mark O’Neill became the runner up in the competition. Mark was quite consistent over both sectors of the course despite having a double bogey on each of them. A run of pars at holes one, two, four and five gave him an early fillip. A birdie on the ninth complemented the pars. He was quickly off the mark on the back nine with a birdie, par, birdie run. Back to back pars at holes fifteen and sixteen rounded off his winning position.

With Francie Tallon taking the gross award the final net prize of the day went to Harry Hoy. This veteran 14 handicapper took the honours with a best of the season effort of 39 points. In doing so he successfully saw off the challenge of Daniel and Peter Wright. He was through the opening nine with pars at holes three, four, seven and eight on his card. Perhaps double bogeys on holes two and six were a little disconcerting.

A trio of pars provided a fruitful start to the homeward nine. He closed off his round with an encouraging two pars. This was vital because at the end of the day it was his scoring over the last three holes of play that proved consequential.

The competition gross went to Francie Tallon. This two handicapper won with an impressive 37 gross points. He was one under par after nine holes thanks to six pars, birdies on holes four and six and a bogey on the eighth. He started the back nine with more birdies on holes ten and twelve. However bogeys on holes fourteen and sixteen negated these gains. Pars on the other five holes enabled him to assemble this gross sixty nine.

Our congratulations go out to High O’Reilly on the day. He had a ‘hole-in-one’ at the par three seventeenth and this well executed shot will be savoured for posterity.

The other golfers who submitted under par scores were as follows:

39 pts: Peter Wright, Daniel Wright.

38 pts: Aidan Thornbury, Terence Eagers, Laurence Mitchell.

37 pts: Brian Malcolmson, Wilson Collins, Kieran Keraney, John Healy and Marcel Shanks.