AFTER the euphoria and the expectations of Captain’s Day the following week’s golf was relatively quiet.
Still the Lurgan Masters competition last week had a very good profile. It was once again generously sponsored by J R McMahon Outfitters of Lurgan.
A good turn out of 240 members took part in this novel type tournament for the so-called ‘green blazer’. The stiff stroke format applied and at the conclusion of play only 22 golfers managed a score under par. This equated to slightly over nine per cent of the field.
The principal net prize went to single figure handicapper Shane Magee with his outstanding return of net 64.
This four handicapper had matters well under control on both sides of the course. On the opening nine birdies at holes two, four and six gave him an early boost. Pars alongside bogeys on holes seven and eight comprised the remainder of his front nine offering. A double bogey on the thirteenth was his sole blemish on the inward nine. Three birdies and five pars came his way on the other eight holes. Holes eleven, twelve and seventeen were the birdie holes. It was no great surprise that his gross 68 prevailed on the day.
A return of net 65 enabled Eamon McCarron to lift second place. This sixteen handicapper opened with a double bogey six on the first. After that a string of pars at holes three, six, seven, eight and nine put him in a favourable position at the halfway mark. He concluded business with vital pars at holes twelve, seventeen and eighteen. With nothing worse than a bogey he duly took second place.
Another return of net 65 guided Alan Hamilton into third place. This seven handicap golfer was level par through the front nine. He had birdies on holes five and seven and they countered bogeys on holes two and six. Pars were his lot on the other five holes. On the homeward nine he added five more pars. He birdied the twelfth but he fell foul of bogeys on holes thirteen, fourteen and sixteen.
Single figure handicapper Colin Thompson grabbed fourth net with a four under score of net 66. This six handicapper had early birdies on holes one and four. However bogeys on holes eight, ten, sixteen and eighteen tempered his score. Pars on the rest of the holes eased him into this winning position.
Martin Drain’s good play continues and he captured the fifth net award. This five handicapper took the honours with a net 67. His day began with a birdie on the first. Pars and bogeys in equal amounts made up the rest of the outward nine. He covered the back nine in thirty four blows. Birdies came his way on holes ten and fifteen before he ran up a bogey on the last. Pars on the remaining holes guided onto the winning podium.
The sixth and last net prize went to Tom Lamb. This 26 handicapper won with another score of net 67. Over the round a quintet of pars at holes one, four, six, nine and twelve proved the foundation of his winning effort. Six double bogeys and triple bogeys on holes fourteen and sixteen deprived him of an even higher placing.
Gareth Moore took the main gross award with a gross 68. This two handicapper’s sole bogey came on the sixteenth. Three birdies and fourteen pars made up the rest of his well-executed round. Holes six, fifteen and seventeen were the birdie holes.
The second gross award went to one handicapper Gary Clarke. He was victorious with an one over par 71. On the day he birdied holes six, seven, ten and sixteen. On the flip side he incurred bogeys on holes three, five, eight, eleven and fourteen. Thankfully pars were his lot on the rest of the holes.
The student prize went to Eamon Lynch. This seven handicapper posted the best net return of 64 to earn this timely reward. His scores ranged from birdies to a double bogey on the seventeenth. The birdies were registered on holes four, eleven, fifteen and sixteen. Pars were his lot on the remainder of the holes except the first, third and sixth where he succumbed to bogeys.
The other notable scoring came from the following golfers:
67 net: Michael McSherry, Jack Wilson.
68 net: Mal McConville, Timmy Cummins, Aidan Murphy, Roy Bratchie.
69 net: Philip Shaw, Andrew Gates, Mark Plackitt, Morris Lyness, Seamus Cushley, Conor McDonald, Raymond Porter, Michael McLaughlin.
Billy Hughes had the shot of the day when he had an albatross two at the fifteenth hole.