“WE just got over the line by the skin of our teeth.”
That was the reaction of Kinsale Golf Club team manager John O’Neill after his side won a dramatic All-Ireland final in Thurles on Sunday.
With the match finely balanced, O’Neill saw his final pair of golfers go to sudden death, and the won the title on the 19th green in front of a huge crowd of supporters.
The pair at the centre of the drama was Paul Shanahan and Rhys Reynolds.
They had been three ahead with three holes to play, but they went on to lose the 16th, 17th and 18th.
It was a case of déjà vu for Shanahan and Reynolds, they were the pair who held their nerve on the 18th in Dundrum in July to seal the Munster win for Kinsale.
And the result was similar this time, with Kinsale beating Hermitage 3-2 after they won on the 19th.
2018 has been a great year for Kinsale, reaching the Munster finals in four separate competitions and winning their first two Munster Cups & Shields titles.
Team Manager O’Neill was delighted that his friend Shanahan was the one who held his nerve on the final hole.
“I grew up with Paul Shanahan. We played pitch and putt in the old pitch and putt in Carrigaline and if I wanted anyone going down there, I’d want him.
“He can chip and putt and his head was always there. It went a bit ropey because we were dormie three, but we always had the initiative.
“We could do nothing about a couple of bad shots on 18 but we dug deep. That’s the thing about this team, they will fight for you.
“We are not the best golfers but on any given day we will give it to anyone.”