Ireland make solid start at European championships in Austria

Ireland are on course to secure a top-eight place at the European Men’s Team Championships today after a solid start at Diamond in Austria.

Tony Goode’s side were sat in fourth spot after the first round of stroke play qualifying yesterday on eight-over par (368) and, crucially, seven strokes ahead of Denmark and France who were both tied for eighth on 15-over par (375).

The trio of Paul McBride (The Island), John-Ross Galbraith (Whitehead) and Stuart Grehan (Tullamore) – who all signed for a level par 72 – were the best Irish performers.

Meanwhile at La Manga in Spain, Ireland ended the first day tied for eighth spot at the European Boys’ Team Championship. Rosslare’s John Brady led the way with a three-under 70 as Ireland ended yesterday 10-over par overall (375), in tied eighth with Finland and the Netherlands.

Lauren Walsh starred once again for Ireland as they gave themselves a real chance of making the top eight at the European Girls’ Team Championship heading into day two at St Laurence in Finland. Walsh, who holed the winning putt against Scotland on her Irish debut to earn victory for the team at the Girls’ Home Internationals last August, carded a two-under 70 yesterday. It was the best score of all six Irish players with the team ending day one of stroke play qualifying in seventh place on nine-over overall (369) and two strokes ahead of Germany in eighth.

Meanwhile at Montado in Portugal, Ireland have work to do today if they are to make the top eight at the European Women’s Team Championship. The side were 12th after day one on seven-over par (367) and four strokes back on eighth-placed Belgium (363).

After another round of stroke play qualifying today, the match play phase of the respective tournaments begins tomorrow.

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