Naas professional, Conor O’Rourke heads a quintet of Irish raiders taking their chance at Kaskáda Golf Resort this week having missed out on the Prague Challenge a fortnight ago.
The 26-year old has been managing a wrist injury he picked up on the Mediterranean Tour earlier this year but fighting fit ahead of Thursday’s opening round of the D+D REAL Czech Challenge, O’Rourke is feeling at home in Challenge Tour company after an encouraging seasonal debut in Turkey.
“I’m loving it out here, I feel very comfortable,” said O’Rourke, who’s rooming with good friend, Paul McBride for the week. “Playing with good players can only be good for me.
“The course is really nice; I like the look of it. There’s emphasis on hitting good tee shots which is kind of different to most weeks where you can just whack it out there and go play so I’m looking forward to getting out there and seeing what the week will bring.”
There is more than a trophy and a winner’s cheque up for grabs this week for the Kildare man and co. During Sunday’s final round, the player who drives the ball the furthest on the 495-yard par four 12th hole will be treated to a year’s supply of beer! For O’Rourke, however, the focus will first be on making the weekend for what he hopes will be a productive period of golf.
“It’s a busy few weeks,” he added. “After here I’ve got a couple of weeks on Europro and then another Challenge Tour start in France so I’ve a nice little run of stuff coming up. I’ve just been monitoring the amount I’m playing with how my wrist feels. I’ve been clever with that, planning my practice around it.
“I’m just looking forward to getting back into it now. I’ve no doubt scoring will be great again so it’s important to start well but I’m feeling great and hoping for a good week.”
Joining O’Rourke will be The Island’s Paul McBride, Rosapenna’s Ruaidhri McGee, Tramore’s Robin Dawson and Ardglass’ Cormac Sharvin. Dawson ended a barren run of five missed cuts in Prague a fortnight ago and he’ll be hoping to kick on from his tied 12th finish with another positive performance in Brno.