Having qualified for the quarter-finals five places and 16 strokes ahead of their opponents Netherlands, the Irish, who last lifted the title five years ago, looked likely to move into the last four. And when they won both morning foursomes an Irish success appeared to be virtually a banker.
For most of the afternoon Irish eyes were smiling, but, late on, there was a dramatic about-turn in fortunes and their chances of glory were gone in a shock 4-3 defeat. Kevin Phelan, who played all four rounds in the US Open last month and battled with Jack Hume for a foursomes triumph, was in front for most of the way against Robbie van West. But, having been pegged back to level at the 15th, he then lost the 16th and 17th and the match.
Dubliner Paul Dunne, who smashed the Princes Course record in Kent in last month’s Amateur Championship, also lost both 16 and 17 to Lars van Meijel to slip to defeat.
Rory McNamara, the hero of the strokeplay phase, lost three holes in a row from the 13th and that put paid to his hopes against Rowin Caron while Hume was just edged out.
Only Irish winner was Gavin Moynihan, who was four up at the turn against Jeroen Krietemeijer and went on to win 4&3.
The Netherlands will now play in England while France meet Scotland in the semi-finals.
At Murcar in Scotland there was no surprise that Ireland were beaten by classy England.
They started well enough and shared the morning foursomes. In fact it could have been 2-0 at lunch but Paul McBride and Sean Flanagan two up after 12 holes on Bradley Moore and Jack Singh-Brar lost on the 19th.
In the afternoon they were completely outplayed and went down in all six singles suffering a 6-1 reverse.
Ireland’s women are still in contention for ninth place in their Euro Championship after trouncing Slovenia 4½-½ at Fulford in York. Paula Grant and Chloe Ryan won their foursomes, while Stephanie Meadow continued her fine form to win her game and the Maguire twins Leona and Lisa also won.
And their girls beat the Czech Republic at Linkoping in Sweden to maintain hopes of ninth place. They won 3-2 with the foursomes couple of Chloe Weir and Ariana Coyle Diez getting the decisive point at the 19th hole.
* See Results page.