Tiago leads the field at Lurgan

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The last week of the Winter League at Lurgan as played in very spring like conditions with scores to match.

The overall winner was Tiago Souto with 39pts off 16 to demonstrate once more just how adept he is at handling mats, rocket launchers and temporary greens.

He had two nett eagles and eight nett birdies on his way to victory and another well earned prize.

Roy Bratchie’s 38pts, off 16, was his best score in some time and it was good enough to claim the day’s runners-up spot. With 34pts in his pocket on the last tee he needed a birdie to convert a very good score into a podium score and that is exactly what he got.

Section 1 went to Timmy Cummins with 37pts off 5. Timmy has been in red hot form of late and he shot yet another sub-par round of 4 under thanks to birdies at 3 and 12, and his second consecutive eagle 3 at the 15th.

There is just no stopping Timmy and his offspring at the moment, but just at the moment he is reminding them just who is the master. Just one point behind came Alex Denver with 36pts off 5 and he will always be able to recall the day when he shot 6 birdies and 3 bogeys for a round of 3 under par and still couldn’t make it into the prizes.

On 33pts came Paul McConaghy, 7, and Kevin McKavanagh, 6. Paul will be disappointed with a double bogey at the 15th which moved him from under to over par in a flash, while Kevin will be hoping his score marks a return to form.

Three birdies and three bogeys helped Paul Rippon to his first ever level par round and 38pts, off 10, to lift section 2. He is another player very much on the up with his last three scores being 33, 36 and 38, and we await to see just how much higher he can go.

Nevan Lavery’s recent successes caught up with him as a winter reduction meant his 38pts, off 12, could not find a place in the prizes, but there is little doubt he will be featuring in them again before long.

Aidan Thornbury, 9, John Healey, 11, and Bernie Mulligan, 12, each had 36pts to just miss out on reward. Aidan finished with a pair of birdies while John will look back at his failure to score at the relatively easy 1st with some disgust.

Bernie completed a successful winter first half with yet another impressive performance and left him wishing that some others on his team could have followed his example.

Level par after 9 must have left David Dowey thinking about his last sub-par round recorded almost a quarter of a century ago, but four dropped shots coming home were to spoil that dream. He still took section 3 with 38pts off 14 and will be hoping that a similar opportunity will present itself before long.

Wilf Elliott, 16, Conal McAshea, 20, and Tony Gordon, 17, also had 38pts to miss out on reward on the back 9. Just 1pt behind came Maurice Turnbull, 18, Tom Lamb, 22, and Tom Connolly, 19.

Nicholas Campbell will certainly be walking on air for a while and with very good reason as he took the gross with 32 gross pts. What will really please him though is the stylish way in which he compiled his score containing, as it did, four birdies to go with a brilliant eagle at the 15th. Well done

Nicholas who is a deserving addition to this winter’s gross winners’ club.

It was a double celebration this weekend for Hugh O’Reilly as not only Captaining his team The Printer’s to League success, he himself was also crowned Winter League Winner with his best five cards total of 170 points.

Hugh had come from almost nowhere with only 25 points in week one to five consecutive high scoring weeks of 28, 32, 38, 36 & 36.

When Hugh got a sniff of glory he went for it and well deserved too. Runner up was Timmy Cummins who was just piped at the post on 169 points. Timmy also played some steady golf with his five best cards 33, 30, 36, 32 and 37.

Nevan Lavery finished in 3rd place with 167 and David O’Neill who led for most of the campaign finished in 4th spot with 166 points.

Presentation of prizes will be this Saturday evening at the Winter League Dinner.

The Winter League Committee thank everyone who played in this season’s competition; the support was greatly appreciated. Members will be back in the New Year for the second half with another competition to bring us to the Spring and the new golf season.