Brian Keogh at his excellent IrishGolfDesk carries the disappointing news this morning that the five Irish Open spots which used be given to the best Irish PGA Club Professionals are to be reduced to just one for the 2016 staging. And the guys will have to play against each other for it, just two days before the event starts.

According to our sources, next year's Dubai Duty Free Irish Open at The K Club will instead feature a Tuesday qualifier on the Smurfit Course for just one place in the 2016 field at the Palmer Ryder Cup Course from May 19-22.
The move is a major shift from tradition but in keeping with the increasingly competitive nature of the European Tour and the demand for places in what will be a €4 million event.
PGA Tour events traditionally host a Monday qualifier for one or two places in that week's tour event.
In many respects it's sad that hard working Irish club pros, who had this one great opportunity once a year to get out there and play with the best are having the rug pulled from under them.  On the other hand there is a kindof gladiatorial opportunity to play off to find out who is the most in form to take his Irish Open spot.

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