Monday, May 27, 2024

Matthew McClean and Liam Nolan locked in battle at summit at Co Sligo

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Matthew McClean is eight-under-par following the first two days of the Irish Men’s Amateur at Co Sligo

Malone’s Matthew McClean will continue his rivalry with Walker Cup team-mate Liam Nolan as the pair will share the lead heading into the weekend at the Irish Men’s Amateur at Co Sligo.

The two have matched each other blow for blow over the first two days, as they not only played in the same group together but both carded rounds of 66 and 68 to hold a two-shot halfway lead at eight-under-par.

Once again, it was a fine finish from McClean that earned him a share of that lead, two birdies in his final three holes – including birdieing the 18th for his second day in a row – catapulting him to the top after five birdies and two bogeys in his three-under round.

Brabazon Trophy champion Nolan would match him with an eagle, three birdies and two bogeys but will have been frustrated to go birdie-less on his back nine, with a solitary bogey bringing him back to the pack.

Berehaven’s Joe O’Neill is their closest challenger at six-under after a second-round 69, while first-round leader Gavin Tiernan (Co Louth) slipped back into fourth at five-under after a 72.

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