What a couple of weeks! My defence of the Irish PGA Championship couldn’t really have gone better and my trip to Woburn for the British Masters was simply fantastic. Sometimes, what can be a lonely road of the professional golfer leads to weeks like these and all seems worthwhile!
Irish PGA Championship 2015. Dundalk Golf Club
As many of you will know, some golf courses just suit your eye and others don’t. Sometimes for no good reason a course just feels comfortable and the game seems that bit easier. You hear on TV when golfers comment that the course suited their eye and therefore they shoot low scores in that venue. I haven’t played Dundalk that often and indeed hadn’t played it for a few years so I really didn’t have expectations either way of how I would do. It was an honor to win the championship in 2014 and an honor to attempt its defence. My game was good going into that week but to shoot 22 under on a course that’s challenging to say the least was terrific. My tournament got off to a great start with a really solid first round. 8 birdies and just 1 bogie had me in tie for the lead with my great friend Eamonn Brady. Congrats to Eamonn on winning the Irish PGA order of merit. Competition is so good in Ireland at present so it’s a great achievement to secure the order of merit. Heading into round 2, I knew that with Eamonn and other top players in the mix, nothing would come easy. I was surprised to have a healthy lead at 11 under after round 2 and subsequent rounds of 5 and 4 under respectively gave me a winning margin of 14 shots. However these tournaments are never over until the 18th on Sunday. Even though I was swinging good during the final round I couldn’t really relax until the closing holes when my lead became almost unassailable. All in all a great week and it was great to catch up with friends from the Irish region that I don’t see too often. Thanks also to our sponsor for the week, Low Fuel Card Ltd.
British Masters Woburn Golf Club
Having played in the cauldron of the BMW Championship in Wentworth earlier this year I was somewhat mentally prepared for the British Masters in the beautiful Woburn Golf Club. I concentrated on having the best time I could possibly have in these vaulted surroundings. I have to say I had a ball! I felt really comfortable all week and although putts weren’t dropping with the same regularity as the previous week I played really solid golf and felt at home at this level. This is where I want to be week in week out and where my goals are set. Prize money from Woburn will help enormously with my expenses as I head to Asia for a 10-week stint involving 7 to 8 tournaments. Good form over the coming weeks would see me retain my full Asian Tour Card and get me into the hugely lucrative co-sanctioned events next year. These are tournaments run jointly by the European and Asian tours. Venues are spectacular and prize money very good.
So all in all the last few weeks have been really satisfying. Between the winning of the PGA Cup with my GB & I colleagues, the defence of my Irish PGA title and the Woburn adventure I must say I’m delighted that hard work is paying off. Once again I have to thank you all for the support. I’ve received literally hundreds of messages of congratulations and support and I really appreciate it. Cannot thank you enough for your continued support. Let’s hope the next few weeks are as fruitful and wish you all health and happiness as we head towards Christmas.
All the best