June 2011

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Irish Open presented by Discover Ireland

Killarney Golf & Fishing Club

Killarney, Co Kerry, Republic of Ireland 28 Jul 2011 - 31 Jul 2011

Robert Rock 40/1

Robert-Rock_1059703 Surely the Irish Open owes Robert Rock a win. The Belfry pro bagged all the cash but not the win when Shane Lowry pipped him in a playoff in Baltray two years back and last year he suffered more heartbreak when disqualified after the first round. To add insult to injury Rock had just shot a first round 65 to co lead the event. Finally got his first win at the BMW Italian Open in June and made a big splash at Congressional contending at the US Open having arrived just hours before it started.

Richard Green 28/1

rich green Last year when he finished tied fifth Richard Green described the Killeen Course in Killarney as very similar to the one he grew up on in Killarney. Not the longest hitter on Tour, Green will enjoy the shorter test this week where shot shaping and good putting are rewarded. Winner of last years Portugal Masters on the short but tricky Villamoura layout, Green has been solid of late with top 15’s in Munich and France and tied 16th at The Open.


Padraig Harrington 18/1

Padraig-Harrington-001 Those lucky enough to follow Padraig Harrington last year will have witnessed a short game exhibition from the three time Major Champion. The fact that he came second, just two shots behind Ross Fisher having it only 47% of the fairways proves this. Forget his formline so far this year, Padraig Harrington will be up to reproduce his 2007 win. With the rough up, he’ll really need to be straight off the tee.

Joost Luiten 33/1

Joost-Luiten A decent long odds each way shout this week might Joost Luiten. The Dutchman’s top 10 last year was all the more impressive considering his opening round of 74. He hasn’t been in good form of late with missed cuts in France and Scotland followed by a poor Open Championship but I saw enough in his tied third at the BMW in Munich and tied fifth at the Italian Open in June to believe he can contend this week.

Richard Finch 50/1

RichardFinch Former Irish Open champion Richard Finch will quietly fancy his chances this week and why shouldn’t he? Though he drove it on average 25 yards shorter than winner Alex Noren in Sweden last week, Finch was the straightest driver and best putter in the field. A reproduction of those two stats in Killarney are sure to sure to yield even greater success than his second last week. Finch was the only player in the field to be under par in the final round last Sunday.


Name: Michael Collins

Born: 26/1/1980

Attachment: Mallow Golf Range

Turned Pro: 2001 off scratch

What’s In The Bag

Getting To Know Michael

Most Memorable Honours

Winning this years Irish Club Pro Championship staged in Dundalk. I’ve also played Home Internationals with Ireland as well as at Boys and Youths level. I also have a Senior Cup medal with Mallow!

Another great achievement was poaching a beautiful Kerry woman, Claire McSwiney from Killorglan to be my wife!

What’s Playing On Your ipod at The Moment

I listen to everything but at the moment it’s Aloe Blacc, “I Need A Dollar!”

aloe blacc

Lowest 18 Hole Score in Competition

I shot a seven under 65 in Galgorm Castle on the EuroPro Tour last year.

Favourite Film

la confidential LA Confidential. It’s got that twist right at the end! It has nothing to do with Kim Basinger. Nothing no no no no no no….

Favourite Course


Best Shot You Have Hit With People Watching

Without doubt my 4-iron to five feet on the 18th hole in Killarney in the Irish Open first round last year. And I got the putt for birdie!

Pro You Most Admire


Probably Padraig Harrington for the amount he has achieved in the game and the hard work he put in to get there.


Favourite Sport Other Than Golf


Favourite Team



If I Wasn’t A Pro Golfer I Would Be

Probably a teacher. I have a degree in Arts.

Most Famous Person You Have Ever Met

mother-teresa This is a weird one but I once spoke to Mother Teresa on the phone. I cant remember what she said to me, I was only about six at the time!


Name: Dan Sugrue

Born: 17/3/1978

Attachment: Killarney Golf and Fishing Club

Turned Pro: 2002 off plus 2

What’s In The Bag

Getting To Know Dan

Most Memorable Honours

Getting to the final stage of Tour School in 2002 and qualifying for the Challenge Tour. My greatest achievement though was qualifying for the 2004 Open at Troon. I played with two Major Champions, Zach Johnson and Louis Oosthuizen!

What’s Playing On Your ipod at The Moment?

tom-waitsI’m a big Bob Dylan fan and in case things don’t go well in Killarney this week I always have a bit of Tom Waits ready to really maximize the depression!


Lowest 18 Hole Score in Competition

I once shot a 63 at Tour School in Five Lakes in England.

Favourite Film

MagnoliaMagnolia. It came out in 1999 and was directed by Paul Thomas Anderson. Bet you didn’t expect that!


Favourite Course

It has to be Killeen in Killarney!

Best Shot You Have Hit With People Watching

The best shot I ever hit was a holed out 8 iron for eagle on the 18th hole to qualify for the 2004 Open Championship.

Pro You Most Admire

Padraig Harrington. He opened the door for Irish golf.

Favourite Sport Other Than Golf

Gaelic Football

Favourite Team

Kerry of course!


If I Wasn’t A Pro Golfer I Would Be


Most Famous Person You Have Ever Met

Do you mean apart from The Gooch?seve-ballesteros1_1757411c?!!!  The most famous person I have met is Seve. I think it was in 1999 in Dublin airport. He was very interested in our golf. A legend!


The European Tour website are this evening reporting that Corey Pavin was recognized by the Welsh Government.  The successful operation took almost five years and up to 300 Welsh government officials.

It’s thought the Welsh Government came close to recognizing Corey Pavin back in 2003 during the Bush administration but it turned out to be Michael Parkinson outside a shopping centre in Cardiff.

The trail went cold until the Obama administration, working with the Welsh Government and thousands of google images finally succeeded in recognizing Pavin.  Its thought Pavin was recognized as he crossed the street outside his local school with his kids.

Great to see the Welsh Government are doing really useful things and aren’t just a colossal waste of British taxpayers money.

Connacht (with a wee bit of help from a Cavan man!) are the 2011 Interprovincial champions.  Apparently, according to golf historian Enda Lonergan the last time Connacht won was 1983 BC, when archaeologists found etchings to that effect on the inside of a cave near Connemara.

Afterward Connacht secretary Enda said “The win was all down to the new green shirts, it took us 28 years to figure out the yellow ones didn’t quite work.”

Back row (left to right): Barry Anderson, Gary McDermott, Steffan O’Hara, Eddie McCormack (legend), Kelan McDonagh, Michael Durcan

Front row (left to right) Joe Lyons, Adrian Wynne (Captain), Niall MacSweeney (Manager), Sean Cannon

Final Standings: 1 Connacht, 2 Ulster, 3 Leinster 4, Munster.

Final Round Scores

Thursday 21 July 2011

Ulster 8 Munster 3

(Ulster names first)

Reeve Whitson & Aaron Kearney halved with Niall Gorey & Gary O’Flaherty; Harry Diamond & Connor Doran beat Pat Murray & Ian O’Rourke 1 hole; Luke Lennox & Nicky Grant beat Sean Barry & David O’Donovan 2/1; Colm Campbell & Wayne Telford halved with Kieran Hurley & Ed Stack

Harry Diamond halved with Niall Gorey; Reeve Whitson lost to Ian O’Rourke 1 hole; Aaron Kearney beat Sean Barry 1 hole; Connor Doran halved with David O’Donvoan; Luke Lennox beat Pat Murray 3/2; Nicky Grant beat Ed Stack 1 hole; Colm Campbell beat Gary O’Flaherty 5/3

Conancht 5.5 Leinster 5.5 (Connacht names first)

Barry Anderson & Eddie McCormack lost to Eoin Arthurs & Richard O’Donovan 5/4; Steffan O’Hara & Sean Cannon lost to Paul Dunne & Stephen Walsh 2/1; Gary McDermott & Kelan McDonagh lost to John Greene & Craig Martin 1 hole; Michael Durcan & Joe Lyons lost to Rory McNamara & Brian Casey 2/1

Eddie McCormack beat Eoin Arthurs 8/6; Barry Anderson halved with Paul Dunne; Gary McDermott lost to Richard O’Donovan 1 hole; Michael Durcan beat Stephen Walsh 5/4; Steffan O’Hara beat John Greene 2 holes; Kelan McDonagh beat Craig Martin 2/1; Joe Lyons beat Rory McNamara 2/1

karl morris He is to mind coaching in golf what The Stig is to testing racing cars.  Yes, he is Karl Morris and the great news is Karl is setting up a base in Ireland.

The leading Mind Coach, who can claim a part in the last two Open Championship wins of Louis Oosthuizen and Darren Clarke  is set to formally join the GUI National Golf Academy as their official Mind Coach.  Clients, both through personal and group sessions will now be able to avail of Karl’s coaching right here in Ireland, at the GUI’s National Academy in Carton House.

Plan’s are also afoot to hold one of the world famous Karl Morris Mind Factor Golf Schools, a two day residential course which is planned for 2012 at the Carton House venue.

The Stig, I mean Karl said “I am extremely excited about this arrangement. I have over the years been fortunate to work with some of the world’s best players and I am keen to share some of those discoveries with a wider audience. I have a particular affinity for Irish golf as I have always been made to feel incredibly welcome on the numerous visits over the years. To have a permanent base at such fantastic facilities is a wonderful opportunity for me”.

Book me in, I’m coming Karl!

What is it with Germany and Ireland at the moment?  First we have Angela Merkel treating Ireland like a piece of chewing gum stuck to the sole of her shoe and now we have Schuco organizing a lucrative two day exhibition match to poach the top Tour stars away from the Irish Open in Killarney.

Schuco who haven't been involved in the game of golf a wet week are staging a golf event to coincide with next weeks Irish Open.  The meaningless two day Schuco Open may have a crap matchplay format and an even more crap website but has forked out millions to entice the likes of  Martin Kaymer, Henrik Stenson, Geoff Ogilvy, Bubba Watson, Ian Poulter, Dustin Johnson, Álvaro Quirós, Miguel Ángel Jiménez, Grégory Havret, Edoardo Molinari and others to “compete”.

Do Schuco have any respect for the institutions of the European Tour?  Should the top players not have a little more allegiance to one of the oldest and  best attended events on Tour that is the Irish Open? It all stinks to high heaven.

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Watson_t1 There’s a double dose of Senior golf coming this week and next with the Senior Open Championship starting today at Walton Heath. The US Senior Open will be played next week at the Inverness Golf Club in Toledo in Ohio.

All eyes will again be on Tom Watson. The 61 year old will be looking for a fourth Senior Open crown but this time he wont have the advantage of links under him.  The inland course at Walton Heath south of London was opened in 1913 and is often used for Open Championship sectional qualifying.

Bernhard Langer, who has been suffering with a thumb injury is the defending champion and tees it up after missing the cut last week at The Open. Coverage on Sky Sports.

stevie williams bib funny[11] Tiger Woods announced tonight that he is to divorce Steve Williams after 12 years of wedded bliss.

"I want to express my deepest gratitude to Stevie for all his help, but I think it's time for a change," Woods said in a statement on his website. "Stevie is an outstanding caddie and a friend and has been instrumental in many of my accomplishments. I wish him great success in the future."

Tiger’s going to miss those glued on silver locks and that sexy way Stevie had of getting spectators ejected, but somehow he’ll muddle through.

Wednesday 20 July 2011

Ulster 5 Leinster 6 

(Ulster names first)

Connor Doran & Harry Diamond lost to Eoin Arthurs & Richard O’Donovan 3/2; Aaron Kearney & Reeve Whitson beat Rory McNamara & Brian Casey 5/4; Luke Lennox & Colm Campbell halved with Paul Dunne & Stephen Walsh; Nicky Grant & Wayne Telford lost to John Greeneddie funnye & Craig Martin 2/1
Reeve Whitson lost to Eoin Arthurs 4/3; Harry Diamond beat Richard O’Donovan 6/5; Connor Doran lost to Paul Dunne 1 hole; Aaron Kearney beat Brian Casey 3/2; Luke Lennox beat Stephen Walsh 2/1; Nicky Grant halved with Craig Martin; Colm Campbell lost to Rory McNamara 2/1

Munster 5 Connacht 6

(Munster names first)

Pat Murray & Ian O’Rourke halved with Barry Anderson & Eddie McCormack; Niall Gorey & Gary O’Flaherty beat Gary McDermott & Kelan McDonagh 4/3; Sean Barry & David O’Donovan beat Steffan O’Hara & Sean Cannon 7/6; Kieran Hurley & Ed Stack halved with Michael Durcan & Joe Lyons

Pat Murray lost to Eddie McCormack 5/4; Niall Gorey beat Michael Durcan 2 holes; Sean Barry lost to Gary McDermott 3/1; David O’Donovan lost to Steffan O’Hara 3/2; Gary O’Flaherty lost to Kelan McDonagh 3/2; Kieran Hurley lost to Joe Lyons 1 hole; Ian O’Rourke beat Barry Anderson 4/3

us junior This is the incredible story of Connor Klein (not Calvin’s son, the other one) from  Long Tree, Colorado who was playing in the first round of the 64th U.S. Junior Amateur at Gold Mountain Golf Club.  Early in the round it became obvious to officials that Klein was holding up play and his group was clocked.  Not bothered by that, the kid continued to take an age over each shot, forcing officials to again check the group on the fifth hole, where it was decided that Klein was to be penalized one stroke for slow play.

Pic: Woman putting way too much effort into a kids event scoreboard

Ignorant of the penalty, the young Klein went ahead the 170-yard, par 3, only to be approached mid high-fiving by the rules officials and told of the penalty stroke.  It went down as a two on the card. It is unclear whether the rules official high fived Klein.

Klein ended with an 82.  And the moral of the story?  If you’re going to be slow, you better be really really really good!


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mark mcgovern Friends Of GolfCentralDaily were in touch to tell us about Fermanagh's Mark McGovern who suffered a severe head injury in San Francisco on the 25th of June, whilst playing football for Ulster in San Francisco. Mark's friends have organized an evening on Thursday, August 18 at 9:00pm in the Bush Bar Blacklion Cavan to raise vital funds for his treatment in hospital. Live music on the night from top local acts and special guests. A website for donations is also being set up.   We're told Mark is a massive golf fan and loves Sergio Garcia (but we wont hold that against him!) so please, if you can, support Mark and his friends in this very worth cause.


Ulster 5.5 Connacht 5.5

eddie mccormack (Ulster names first)

Connor Doran & Harry Diamond lost to Barry Anderson & Eddie McCormack 2/1; Reeve Whitson & Aaron Kearney beat Steffan O'Hara & Sean Cannon 7/6; Luke Lennox & Colm Campbell lost to  Michael Durcan & Joe Lyons 1 hole; Nicky Grant & Wayne Telford halved with Gary McDermott & Kelan McDonagh

Pic: Eddie “Living Legend” McCormack

Harry Diamond beat Steffan O’Hara 1 hole; Aaron Kearney lost to Eddie McCormack 2/1; Connor Doran beat Sean Cannon 1 hole; Reeve Whitson beat Michael Durcan 3/2; Luke Lennox halved with Kelan McDonagh; Nicky Grant halved with Joe Lyons; Wayne Telford lost to Barry Anderson 1 hole

Leinster 4.5 Munster 6.5

(Leinster names first)

Eoin Arthurs & Richard O'Donovan halved with Niall Gorey & Gary O'Flaherty; John Greene & Craig Martin lost to Sean Barry & David O'Donovan 3/2; Paul Dunne & Stephen Walsh beat Kieran Hurley & Ed Stack 1 hole; Rory McNamara & Brian Casey lost to Pat Murray & Ian O'Rourke 1 hole

Richard O’Donovan lost to Niall Gorey 2/1; Eoin Arthurs beat Pat Murray 7/6; Craig Martin halved with Sean Barry; Rory McNamara lost to David O’Donovan 3/1; Paul Dunne beat Gary O’Flaherty 1 hole; Stephen Walsh halved

Ed Stack; John Greene lost to Ian O’Rourke 3/1

Betting Preview and Tips, Nordea Masters, Bro Hof Slott GC, Stockholm, Sweden

Dustin Johnson 8/1

oct12-dustin-johnson_372x365 Golf is huge in Sweden and the organizers always try to assemble some big names in the field. Last year they had KJ Choi and Louis Oosthuizen, this time around the headliners are Dustin Johnson and Bubba Watson. Johnson, if physical and mental exhaustion is not a factor, has the power and putting touch to contend on this long and very tough layout not unlike Muirfield Village where he finished fourth at the Memorial. It’s great to see the US golfers coming to Europe, (I remember the days when John Daly, Payne Stewart and co would play in the Irish Open) and it would be some consolation for DJ if another Johnson won the trophy this year.

Fredrik Andersson Hed 40/1

60402370 The 39 year old Swede turned pro way back in 1992. Known as Fredrik Andersson until 2004 when he got married and added his wife surname “Hed” to his own! Finally made the winning breakthrough at last year’s BMW Italian Open beating David Horsey by two. After a very poor run of pre Summer results Andersson Hed played superbly at Castle Stuart to finish second behind Luke Donald. Made the cut at the Open, even featuring on the day one leaderboard with a 68. Tied for 11th here last year. Each way possibilities

Robert Karlsson 11/1

robert-karlsson_1102552 The last two outings for the Swede have been Major Championships and neither went too well. After opening with a 79 at Congressional, Karlsson did well to make the cut with a second round 67. Missed the cut at The Open last week playing in the worst of the conditions. Based exclusively on the US Tour since February, Karlsson has shown some form stateside playing well at Colonial (fifth) and finishing second at the St Jude Classic the week before the US Open. Made the cut on the mark here last year and went on to finish a very impressive seventh.

Jamie Donaldson 22/1

Donaldson_2339327 Welshman Jamie has been out here for many years and though he had three wins on the Challenge Tour has yet to taste victory on the main Tour. He hasn’t missed a cut since October last year, I make 18 events, which is pretty impressive. Add to that a worst finish of 21stin his last seven starts, with four top tens and you begin to think Donaldson could soon be in the winner’s enclosure. Eighth here last season

Thorbjorn Olesen 30/1

thorbjorn This will be he young Dane’s 23rd start on the European Tour and he has already racked up three second places the latest of which was at the Open de France when a missed short putt on the last cost him at playoff place. Thorbjorn also come close in Italy three weeks before that but missed the cut in his first Open last week. I would not be at all surprised to see this young sensation prevail this week.

Rafa Echenique 125/1

rafa Our long odds shout this week is Argentina’s Rafa Echenique. Absolutely no form on paper but would have won here last year but for Richard S Johnsons miracle birdie putt on the final green to pip him by one. Rafa’s three best results on Tour have come in June or July and the long and tricky Bro Hoff Slott course seems to suit him. A euro each week max!

2011 Nordea Masters Betting Preview and Tips

tom lewis We predicted last week that by the Sunday of The Open everyone would know who Tom Lewis is, and we weren’t far wrong. Lewis introduced himself to the golfing world with a stunning 65 in the first round of the British Open, earning the 20-year-old English amateur a shock share of lead and smashing a whole host of Open records. Everybody wanted a piece of the kid christened “Tom” after his playing partner, Tom Watson. We even found out he has another brother “Jack”, no prizes for guessing who he is named after.

After all is said and done though, Lewis remains grounded after his Open exploits, and wont be turning pro just yet. His experience with third round playing partner Phil Mickelson served as a shock to Lewis system when it comes to the pro ranks.

"Playing with Phil made me feel terrible, really terrible around the greens. If you're going to play with the best players in the world, you have to chip and putt like they do," Lewis said.

Lewis beat Peter Uihlein to the silver medal for the leading amateur finisher at the British Open.

Afterwards he was offered a spot at this weeks Scandinavian Masters but turned it down to practice with his Walker Cup Britain and Ireland teammates in Aberdeen. It’s thought that Lewis will probably turn pro after the Walker Cup in Scotland in September. That will give him just seven tournaments (by invite) to try and earn his Tour card. "Rory McIlroy did it in 2007, so there is time of you're good enough," he said on the subject.

After trawling a mountain of spakes from The Open, here are the distilled down best ones!

"Hang on I'm trying to recollect your little line. 'He's in his inexorable slide toward irrelevance.' Is that what you said? I've got the paper at home. I can show it to you if you don't believe me." – Darren Clarke to Lawrence Donegan after his win.

"It's not an easy surname. It's probably more annoying when theDarren-Clarke-celebrates--007y say, 'I've been practicing it for a month,' and they still get it completely wrong." —Louis Oosthuizen, 2010 Open champion

"Um, three… four… five." —Rory McIlroy, on how many hangovers he's had since he won the U.S. Open

"It never rains in England. Only in Scotland." —Lee Westwood

"He charged me a lot of money, so I can't tell you that." —Darren Clarke, on the advice he's gotten from sports psychologist Bob Rotella

"His looks like a map of Hawaii, though." —Lucas Glover, on Kyle Stanley's beard

"Tom Lewis, how about that? He could be my grandson." —Tom Watson, five-time Open champ, on English amateur Tom Lewis, his playing partner on Thursday and Friday

"The rain was coming down really hard. Yeah, there was a moment where me and Bubba looked at each other and started laughing." — Jason Day

"If I had the option, I'd rather be warm." —Stephen Gallacher

"Obviously, if somebody had given me 69 before I was going out to play, I would have bitten their hand off for it." —Clarke, who shot 69 on Saturday

"I said to the crowd at the 15th, there were 40 or 50 walking around, 'You're just mental. Just mental.' I don't understand that at all. I'm getting paid, I've got to be there." —Paul Lawrie

"One of my good friends said before I left, 'I know you're not going to want to play in it, but I hope it's pissing rain and blowing on you over there.' So he got his wish today. He's back in Indiana right now laughing at me. It's just part of the deal, I guess." —Bo Van Pelt

“This is for the kids”- Darren Clarke

mark_james_1948010c Department of Agriculture officials were today reassuring members of the public that a new case of Foot In Mouth disease, discovered in Kent at the weekend, is under control.  The new strain of Foot In Mouth has been tracked down and isolated in BBC commentator Mark James.

This strain is said to be entirely different to the harmless “Murray Walker” version of Foot In Mouth that surfaced in the eighties. Mark James has now been isolated from members of the general public to protect  them from the disease, which is spread verbally.

Local man Patrick McCrudden overcame Harry Diamond on the first playoff hole of an epic 2011 North Of Ireland  Amateur Championship final. In tough conditions, both men produced class golf, with McCrudden coming back from two down after 12 to tie the match with three holes to play.  After watching a  15 foot putt from his opponent drop at the last, Harry from Belvoir Park canned from 9 foot to bring the match up the 19th.  McCrudden was crowned champ on the first playoff hole.  Well done to both men.

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