Home amateurs hoping to emulate Lowry’s Irish Open success

FOUR Irish amateurs have the opportunity to emulate Shane Lowry’s amazing success at Baltray last year and upstage the professionals in the ‘3’ Irish Open Championship.

Lowry captured the title in 2009 as an amateur defeating England’s Robert Rock at the third play-off hole. But due to his status, Lowry didn’t earn a cent for his success.

He subsequently turned professional and earned €144,843 by the end of the year.

In 2010, Lowry has won €233,114 to stand 66th in the European Tour’s Race to Dubai and 100th in the world rankings.

Lowry was the third amateur to win on the European Tour after Danny Lee of New Zealand, also in 2009, and the Spaniard Pablo Martin in 2007.

Ironically both are also in the Killarney field next month.

Now there’s the opportunity for four more from the unpaid ranks, Ulstermen Paul Cutler and Alan Dunbar, Limerick’s Pat Murray and Dubliner Cian Curley to join this small and elite group.

They are nominees of the Golfing Union of Ireland and before heading for the Kingdom. The quartet, along with Paul Dunne and Irish Close champion Dara Lernihan, represent Ireland in the European Team Championship in Sweden next week.

With the European Ryder Cup team set to be finalised within five weeks of the Irish Open, there has been a flow of entries from those on the fringe of selection bidding to join the likes of Lee Westwood, Graeme McDowell and Rory McIlroy.

Ross McGowan is among the automatic selections on the European Tour points list but another Englishman, the long hitting Ross Fisher, has a bit of ground to make up if he is to make his debut at Celtic Manor. Rhys Davies has given rise to considerable hope that there will be a Welshman in the side while Spaniard Alvaro Quiros would certainly be a crowd favourite should he capitalise on his current promising position.

To date, 16 players who have won on the European Tour this season, have entered.

They are Pablo Martin (Alfred Dunhill Championship), Richie Ramsay (South African Open), Andrew Dodt (Avantha Masters, India), Seung-yul Noh (Malaysian Open), Rhys Davies (Trophy Hassan), Louis Oosthuizen (Open de Andalucia), James Morrison (Madeira Island), Marcus Fraser (Ballantines Championship), Alvaro Quiros (Spanish Open), Fredrik Andersson Hed (Italian Open), Peter Hanson (Majorca Open), Simon Khan (BMW PGA Championship), Thomas Bjorn (Portuguese Open), Graeme McDowell (Wales Open and US Open), Martin Wiegele (St Omer Open) and David Horsey (BMW International).

More in this section

Sport Push Notifications

By clicking on 'Sign Up' you will be the first to know about our latest and best sporting content on this browser.

Sign Up

Ireland's Top 10 Hidden Gems

Ten of the best golf courses in Ireland that too few people know about.

Read Here

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up
Cookie Policy Privacy Policy FAQ Help Contact Us Terms and Conditions

© Irish Examiner Ltd