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The third round of the Munster Youths had to be abandoned today following 90 minutes of play. The 47 golfers who made the cut all started on the course at 9am and while the rain had been falling for an hour or so, the course was in good condition. The rain got much heavier over the first hour of play and greens started to flood. Tournament director Sean O'Leary in consultation with the tournament committee and the Monkstown staff had no alternative but to abandon the third round. The result was declared on the basis of the results of the first 36 holes. And so the title went to Jack McDonnell from Forrest Little/NUIM.
McDonnell therefore won his first major title, and although it was a weather shortened event, the Leinster golfer was a deserving winner having led after both the first and second round. His 66 in the opening round on Tuesday was one of only three under par scores in the two days and that proved to be the difference between him and the field. It the first major win for the +1 golfer and it he was delighted with the win. He thanked everyone involved, especially those who play with him and supported him: "I want to thank the lads that played with me, and Gary Ward who was caddying for me today. It was disappointing that we had to finish up as it would have been a great game between Hugh, James and myself. Hugh made a class birdie on the second so we were heading for a great game. I'd like to thank the Munster Branch for running the competition and Monkstown for hosting it. The course was very nice, it's in very good condition for this time of year. The greens were very fast but and the slopes and pin positions placements were difficult."
Second place went to Hugh O'Hare from Fortwilliam and James Sugrue from Mallow took third place (details of prizewinners below).
Mr John Moloughney, Chairman Munster Golf was delighted to be in Monkstown and started by thanking everyone involved in the event: "Firstly I'd like to congratulate Martin Travers and all of his course team in preparing an excellent course for the Munster Youths. All the staff in Monkstown have been great and I'd like to thank Hilary Madden and all of them for the great welcome. The tournament doesn't just happen, the pre-work started many months ago and I must thank Margaret in the office for all her hard work. The tournament officers too did a great job over the three days, tournament director Sean O'Leary assisted by Phil Cooney and Barry Lynch. It's an important competition with many famous winners, including the current professional here in Monkstown , Cian McNamara. Being from Tipperary we're very proud of a former winner called Paddy Butler who's now playing rugby in France. I'd like to congratulate all of the golfers and it's a pity that the weather forced us into an early finish.
Monkstown Captain Carl Toal welcomed all of the golfers and the members of the Munster Branch. He again said that it was a great honour for Monkstown to host such a great competition. He thanked the volunteers from Monkstown who helped on the range and with ball spotting and especially Pat O'Keeffe, John Foster and Ronan O'Keeffe for running the scoring for the tournament. He also took the opportunity to congratulate Monkstown members Sean Desmond (player) and Jim Long (Munster Branch Secretary and National Junior Convenor) on their win with the Irish Boys against Wales yesterday.
The Munster Strokeplay (Cork GC, 30th April) is the next Munster Championship on the calendar and entries for this event close on 2nd April.
Prize Winners:1st: Jack McDonnell (Forrest Little/NUIM)2nd: Hugh O'Hare (Fortwilliam)3rd: James Sugrue (Mallow)4th: Reece Black (Hilton Templepatrick)5th: Craig Bolger (Carlow)
1st Nett: Jason Conway (Donegal)2nd Nett: Eric Rumley (Kinsale)
Under 18: John Murphy (Kinsale)
Link for Photographs: https://corkgolfnews.com/2016/04/01/gallery-munster-youths-final-day/
Jack McDonnell (Forrest Little/NUIM) receiving the Munster Youths trophy from John Moloughney, Chariman Munster Golf and Carl Toal, Captain Monkstown Golf Club. The event was reduced to 36 following the suspension of play due to bad weather on the final day.
Picture: Niall O'Shea