DOUGLAS booked their place in the Munster finals of the AIG Senior Cup with a fine win on Sunday.
The city club were up against Muskerry in the area in final at Cork Golf Club, and the island provided a great backdrop to a very competitive match.
Douglas had been in the form team in the qualifiers, beating Castlemartyr, Cork and Kinsale. Unusually there were very few watching the event.
Normally Douglas and Muskerry would attract over 100 supporters each, but on Sunday there was only the team management and panel members present as everyone complied with the public health guidelines.
Karl Bornemann’s usual position in the earlier matches was in the first match, but with the order reversed he found himself in the anchor match against David Lane.
Bornemann was two around the turn but kicked on strongly and finished the match on the 13th green with an impressive 6&5 win to put the first point on the board for Douglas.
Peter O’Keeffe added a second point, and although he was a firm favourite to win, Jack Egan didn’t let him away with an easy win.
O’Keeffe shot -15 for his four rounds in Cork the previous week in the Munster Strokeplay.
He knew well that patience was required around Cork, and he was two up after three holes the match was far from over.
Egan got one back on the 10th after a long iron finished less than two feet from the pin. And despite the fact that O’Keeffe’s drive flew the Seve tree on the 11th, Egan also won that hole with a birdie.
Just like the previous week O’Keeffe traded punches and did enough to close out the match on the 16th green.
Kieran O’Donoghue was the man to seal the win.
After a great approach on the 18th, he proceeded with a two putt par to beat John Waldron by one hole.
O’Donoghue had a lead but was pegged back on the 16th when Waldron holed a great birdie putt. O’Donoghue won 17 however to reclaim the lead and went on to half the final hole to claim the match win.
Douglas teenager Jack Murphy was up against it in the second match against Dave O’Donovan.
Although the 14 year old was unbeaten in the campaign, O’Donovan is experienced veteran of cups and shields matches, and like Waldron he has experienced national success.
O’Donovan couldn’t shake off the challenge from the teenager though and the match was still tied after the 18th.
In a great demonstration of sportsmanship, O’Donovan conceded his opponents par putt on the final green.
It was hard to see Murphy missing the three footer but O’Donovan gave the nod and they headed for the 19th.
They were on the 1st green, looking like halving the hole when the call came from the 18th that O’Donoghue had won.
At the same time Paul Tobin was also ahead in his game against Fionn Hickey when they were called in on the 16th green.
The win means that Jim Kingston’s Douglas team areinto the Munster semi-final which will take place in Killarney. They will face Limerick who came out of the North Munster section following their area final win over neighbours Castletroy.
That match takes place on Sunday 27th when a large number of Douglas members will be hoping to attend.
The AIG Junior Cup area final also took place on Sunday featuring Bandon and East Cork.
Also taking place in Cork, this was a repeat of last year’s final when East Cork won a dramatic final match.
As it happened East Cork got the better of Bandon again. Michael O’Neill won the top match for Bandon but James Gillespie, John Barnes and Eoghan Collins put points on the board for East Cork.
The last match, featuring Bandon’s John Carroll was called in. East Cork will face Castletroy in the Munster semi-final which takes place in Fermoy on the 26th September.
The Pierce Purcell are final also took place on Sunday in Muskerry.
That saw Douglas take on East Cork, with East Cork winning 3-1 with the last match halved after being called in. Luckily for East Cork, their next Purcell match also takes place in Fermoy on the 26th.
They will face Kenmare in the Munster semi-final. The last of the AIG Cups and Shields area finals takes place in Lee Valley next Sunday.
The Jimmy Bruen Shield will see Fota Island take on Clonakilty.
There were two scratch cups up for grabs over the weekend. Cathal Butler made a welcome return to the winners circle when he won the John Whyte Memorial in Fermoy, a one under par 69 sealed his win.
In Cobh Fergal Deasy won the Morgan O’Donovan Senior Scratch Cup, the Cork member shot a 75 in tough windy conditions to win by one from Conor McDowell.