Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Coughlan takes the spoils with Munster Men’s Amateur Open victory – Irish Golfer Magazine

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Castleknock’s Paul Coughlan has been crowned the 2024 F45 Elysian Munster Men’s Amateur Open champion after a brilliant four shot win at Cork Golf Club.

The field was reduced to 33 by Sunday morning and over the final two rounds it was the Dublin based golfer who put in an almost perfect performance and walked away as the winner on 10-under par.

The day began with Carton House’s Darragh Flynn leading the way by three shots following rounds of 66 and 70 on Saturday. That lead was short lived as Flynn struggled to get going in the morning session signing for a 75 and Coughlan hunted him down in round three, carding a bogey-free 67 including an excellent par save on 18 to set up an exciting afternoon.

“The weather was pretty good as well. There are chances out here. There are certain holes that you still make pars on but there are a lot of birdie chances out there,” said Coughlan who was spotted tuning up for the event at the Raflewski Golf Academy at Slieve Russell last week, clearly the hard work paid off.

“I kind of had a target of eight in my head, I kind of said eight and have a chance and I started off pretty well this morning, so I just kept it going”.

Coughlan set that target for the day and surpassed it as the early morning sun made way for more breezy and wet conditions during the final session as he continued to shine, teeing off with a two-shot lead over Flynn and picking up where he left off in round three. He blotted his copybook only once on his way to a one-under (35 strokes) for his opening nine holes, walking on to the tenth tee with a three-shot advantage.

The Westmeath man continued his fine form throughout the back nine, his accuracy and aggressive play off the tee leading to four more birdies and two bogeys, closing out with a par on 18 to seal a four-shot victory with a -3 round of 69.

“After the West and a couple of other events I really needed to get one over the line for my own headspace. I just went, stay aggressive even when I got into the lead going into the last round. I said just play it as if you are trailing, make birdies where you can just keep the foot down,” said Coughlan.

While Coughlan expertly plotted his way around the Little Island course, he was pushed all the way by two of the Carton House contingent, reigning West of Ireland champion and Bridgestone Order of Merit leader, Keith Egan, and Flynn. Flynn carded a +3 round of 75 and Egan a +2, 74 in round 3 and both battled back in the final round with Flynn finishing the best of the two, signing for a closing round 72 to finish third.

Brian Doran took home second place after a solid showing on Sunday. The Millicent golfer who was part of Coughlan’s group carded four birdies in his final round for a -6 total.

“I was actually surprisingly quite relaxed. I thought maybe with a couple of shots lead with a couple of holes to go I thought I would be a lot more nervous but we had a good group as well and Brian (Doran) was keeping me going forward as well because he was still making birdies coming up behind me so any kind of slip up he was there to capitalise” said Coughlan.

Meanwhile Douglas golfer James Walsh finished fifth in the standings on -2 and picked up the U-25 award.

View the final scoring here

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