amateur golf
amateur golf

Walker Cup: No defence for holder McDowell
By Ian Stevenson 
Electronic Telegraph

GRAEME McDOWELL, the Walker Cup hopeful from Rathmore, Co Antrim, failed to bridge a 36-year gap in the Golfsure Irish Amateur Close Championship at Co Sligo yesterday.

Not since Joe Carr in 1965 has anyone retained the national title and McDowell, 22, an undergraduate in the United States, lost in yesterday's third round to Belfast's Peter Martin.

Martin defeated the champion by 3 & 2 with winning pars at the 12th, 13th and 14th holes as McDowell lipped out each time.

There was no further luck for Martin, 24, as he went out in the quarter-finals to Darren Crowe from Dunmurry, a close neighbour of Martin, who plays out of nearby Balmoral.

Crowe, an economics student at Queen's University, stormed off to a blistering start to be five-up after seven holes and three-under-par despite the atrocious conditions of gale-force winds and lashing rain.

Crowe will meet Stephen Browne (Hermitage) who ousted Eoin O'Sullivan (The Island) on the home green with a winning par, hitting two drivers 10 yards short and pitching to three feet as O'Sullivan found rough.

Brunston Castle's Alan Reid forms part of a strong Scottish contingent competing in the latest MasterCard Tour event at the Wynyard in County Durham today.

Reid, 26, will be eager to be build on last week's success which saw him share third place in the Glenmuir Club Professionals' Championship in Co Louth.

Lanarkshire are favourites to win the West Division women's inter-county title at Drumpellier are beating Renfrewshire 6.5-2.5 to maintain their 100 per cent record.Lanarkshire complete their fixtures today against pointless Ayrshire.

The West Division winners go forward to the Scottish county finals at Prestwick St Nicholas from Sept 19-21.

GUI IRISH AMATEUR CLOSE CH'SHIP (Co Sligo GC).-3rd rd: E O'Sullivan (The Island) bt P Murray (Kinsale) 3 & 2; S Browne (Hermitage) bt G Hall (Edenderry) 2 & 1; D Crowe (Dunmurry) bt M Campbell (UCD/Stackstown) one hole; P Martin (Balmoral) bt G McDowell (Rathmore) 3 & 2; D Sugrue (Killarney) bt M Horan (Birr) 2 & 1; D Mortimer (Connemara) bt P Purdy (Shandon Park) 3 & 1; G McNeill (Waterford) bt M Ryan (Grange) one hole; S McTernan (Co Sligo) bt T Rice (Limerick) at 19th.

Qtr-finals: Browne bt O'Sullivan 1 hole; Crowe bt Martin 2 & 1; Sugrue bt Mortimer at the 19th; McNeill bt McTernan 4 & 3.


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