Paul McGinley is confident the scheduling issues around next year’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Open can be resolved by European and PGA Tour bosses in the coming weeks but admitted it will be a difficult and challenging task and the outcome may be less than perfect.
A group of distinguished, older members of Lahinch Golf Club assembled outside the clubhouse earlier in the week and looked around in awe at the transformation that had taken place at the Irish Open venue.
One of the most satisfying aspects of writing the 125th history of Lahinch Golf Club in 2016 was the opportunity to meet up once again with three of the most illustrious winners of the South of Ireland Championship and another who captured the Irish Close over the great links.
As the chairman of the Lahinch Golf Club Tournament Committee, John Gleeson has already visualised the packed grandstand behind his club’s 18th green as the champion-elect strides along the par-five final hole with a throng of spectators in his wake and hundreds more teeming up the Liscannor Road on the other side of the wall.
There is no escaping the sense of excitement and expectation not just amongst the members of Lahinch Golf Club but also the whole of the village and West Clare in general as the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open Championship looms this week.
For all the excitement generated by last month’s announcement that the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open is to be played at Lahinch Golf Club next summer, there is plenty to whet the appetite in 2018 as the famous links plays host to the 117th South of Ireland Amateur Open Championship.
The tee shots may not have travelled as far as they once did and the swings were not quite as well grooved but the former South of Ireland champions who assembled at Lahinch yesterday demonstrated they could still teach the modern tigers a thing or two when it came to manoeuvring a golf ball around a links in demanding conditions.
A little over 18 months ago, Lahinch’s infrastructure was battered and bruised by winter storms — but it has been making a strong recovery. Now there are plans to capitalise on the Clare resort’s growing reputation as a watersports destination, writes
Lahinch Golf Club and the Munster Branch do fantastic work for Irish golf but while they are grateful to the GUI for rescheduling the Interpros and Irish Close to make it easier for our top players to head to Clare for next month’s South of Ireland Amateur Open, the measures don’t appear to have worked.