Royal Portrush Win the Fred Daly Plate

The Fred Daly Plate Final was held at Holywood Golf Club​

  • 17 September 2018

Shown above the winning Royal Portrush team being presented with the Fred Daly Plate by Norman Bennett (Ulster Branch Honorary Secretary)

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Morning Semi Finals
In dry but windy conditions the first of the morning semi finals between Royal Portrush and Dunfanaghy got under way with Ewan McArthur (Royal Portrush) and Darcy Hogg (Dunfanaghy) leading the way.
It was matches four to six that proved to be key to the result as Royal Portrushs Johnny Strang was two up against James Marriott, Cameron Fox three up against Conor Hanna and Aaron Fleming four up against James Sweeney. With Cameron and Aaron eventually winning 5 and 4 and Will winning 4 and 3. 

In the remaining matches Ewan McArthur beat Darcy Hogg 2 and 1 to give Royal Portrush the four points required, the final result 4 - 3 overall. 

The second semi final was between Malone and Rockmount.

First on the tee was Marco Deane vs Frank McWilliams, followed by Fionn Dobbin vs Jordan Fletcher, Michael Glasgow vs Jacob Leaker, Josh Armstrong vs Euan Neeson, Ciaran Shearer vs Eoin McGleenon, Joseph O’Sullivan vs Paddy Leaker and the final semi final of Robert Craigan vs Thomas Crawford. (Malone names first)

By the time the matches reached the back nine there was very little between the two teams.  One hole separated the first three and sixth match with honours even as Marco Deane and Michael Glasgow for Malone and Jordan Fletcher and Paddy Leaker for Rockmount leading. In the other three matches Malone held the slight advantage.

As the matches progressed around the back nine the result could have gone either way. As Jordan Fletcher secured the first point for Rockmount with a 4 and 3 win, which was followed by the first point for Malone as Josh Armstrong recorded a 6 and 4 win. A 3 and 2 win for Michael Glasgow and 2 and 1 win for Paddy Leaker gave each team another point on the board. Leaving the key matches to be one, five and seven. 

In the first match Marco Deane left the fourteen green two down and then proceeded to win the next three holes to take a one hole lead onto the eighteenth over Frank McWilliams. Unfortunately McWilliams missed his first putt and after watching Deane roll his putt past the whole, missed his second to leave Deane two putts for the match.

The fifth match between Ciaran Shearer and Eoin McGleenon also reached the eighteenth green with a half for McGleenon giving Rockmount their third point, leaving both teams all square with one match remaining.

In that match Thomas Crawford for Rockmount fought back from four down with seven to play to reach the eighteenth tee all square.  Unfortunately for him his drive ended up in the trees on the right hand side of the fairway leaving him unable to reach the green. In doing so Robert Craigan was able to secure the final point required to take Malone into the afternoon finals.

Match 1: Ewan McArthur (Royal Portrush) vs Marco Deane (Malone)
McArthur won the match on the seventeenth two and one.

Match Two: Joel Knipe (Royal Portrush)  vs Fionn Dobbin (Malone)
The second match of the final was closely contested match with the boys remaining all square through nine. The turning point was an excellent approach shot to the thirteenth green by Dobbin. Buoyed by this win he proceeded to win the fourteenth, after Knipe drove his ball into the fairway bunker and couldn’t reach the green. With Dobbin still two up he proceeded to chip in on the sixteenth to win his match three and two. 

Match Three: Cameron Fox (Royal Portrush) vs Michael Glasgow (Malone)
Fox was always in control of the third match. An early lead over the opening holes gave him a four hole lead as they walked up the hill to the tenth tee box. Although Glasgow had reduced the lead to three after thirteen, Fox finished out the match with a five and three win.

Match Four: Johnny Strang (Royal Portrush) vs Josh Armstrong (Malone)
The match between Strang and Armstrong was another close match that could have went either way, Strang eventually won two up. 

Match Five: Aaron Fleming vs Ciaran Shearer
Again another close match through the opening holes with Fleming taking a one shot lead onto the back nine, Fleming closed out the match on the next hole for four and three win overall. 

Match Six: Will McNeill (Royal Portrush) vs Joseph O’Sullivan (Malone)
With Royal Portrush leading in matches three, four and five; O'Sullivan reversed the trend building a four hole lead by the tenth, maintaining it through thirteen and fifteen to win the match 4 and 3. 

Match Seven: Lewis Fox (Royal Portrush) vs Robert Craigan (Malone)
The last match to tee off in the final saw Fox take a two shot lead into the back nine. By the time the match reached the fourteenth he had extended his lead to three and as the final was coming to a conclusion up ahead he finished the match on the fifteenth for another four and three win for Royal Portrush. 

Overall Result

Royal Portrush beat Malone by five matches to two in the final to win the Fred Daly Plate.